Tocher And Tocher Taxidermy Specialists

Discussion in 'Articles' started by AfricaHunting.com, Aug 21, 2018.

  1. AfricaHunting.com

    AfricaHunting.com AH ENABLER FOUNDER AH Ambassador

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    Received an email with the following: "Hi I have some photos of antique taxidermy and info on my grandfather who was a taxidermist in India at the time the Van Ingens were in business. Please let me know if your interested in writing about this subject on your website."

    Here is the info on TOCHER AND TOCHER that was sent to me:


    Tocher and Tocher (1906 to circa 1968) were a firm of Anglo Indian taxidermists located in Bangalore, India. William Tocher was born in India in 1853 and was of Scottish ancestry. William’s father, James, had arrived in India with the East India Company. William became involved in taxidermy as a hobby, he later started his own taxidermy business in 1906.

    William Tocher died in 1938 and the business then passed to his son Herbert Tocher born 1899, who together with his son, George, continued the business at their home and studio named Panthera in Fraser Town, Bangalore.

    herbert-tocher.jpg
    Herbert Tocher in India with some of his taxidermy tiger and leopard skin rugs.


    Work
    Tocher and Tocher produced hunting trophies during an era when hunting was considered a gentlemen's sport and was very popular especially during the time of the British Raj in India. They worked on skins which were presented to them by the shikaris of dignitaries, senior military and film stars etc. Tocher and Tocher manufactured full mounts, half mounts, head and shoulder mounts, head only mounts and rugs. Their taxidermy mounts were made from the skins of tigers, leopards, bears, foxes, deer and other wild animals native to India.

    They were a small family business and Herbert Tocher would personally hand paint the glass eyes for the specimens,as stated in their catalogues a tiger or leopard skin rug with head mount would take around two and half months to produce and a full tiger or leopard mount around six months.

    The name Tocher and Tocher Taxidermists is perhaps not as familiar as larger taxidermy firms of the time such as theVan Ingens.

    tocher-and-tocher-leopard.jpg
    A Tocher and Tocher leopard skin rug with head mount from the 1920s’, photographed in 2017.


    Connections
    In 2005 during a visit to the Van Ingen factory in Mysore by the taxidermy expert and writer Dr Pat A Morris, whilst carrying out research for a book on the Van Ingens Dr Morris came across two discarded Tocher and Tocher price lists and catalogues at the Van Ingen factory. According to the price lists, in 1923 Tocher and Tocher were the taxidermy specialists to the Vernay Faunthorpe American scientific expedition to India. The expedition was to source tiger and leopard taxidermy specimens for mounting and display in the Hall of Asian Mammals at the American Museum of Natural History in New York.

    There are also references to Tocher and Tocher Taxidermy in a recent book named The Last White Hunter written by Joshua Mathew. The book chronicles the life of Donald Anderson who was once the movie stunt double for Stewart Granger in the 1958 film Harry Black and the Tiger. A stuntman and an accomplished hunter, Donald was the son of writer and big game hunter Kenneth Anderson. Donald mentions that Tocher and Tocher were the preferred taxidermists for all the big cats which both he and his father Kenneth hunted. Donald states that Herbert Tocher was friends with his father Kenneth and Herbert Tocher taught both the Andersons how to skin their animals and then prepare the skins for mounting.

    donald-anderson-herbert-tocher.jpg
    Donald Anderson with Herbert Tocher


    Legacy
    During the 1960’s the Indian government began to open secure national parks and reserves in an attempt to preserve the numbers of wild tigers and leopards which were by now decreasing, this resulted in less hunting and the closure of the Tocher and Tocher business. During the late 1960’s the Tocher’s studio and house in Bangalore were sold and the family migrated to London United Kingdom. In 1972 the Indian government finally banned the hunting of wild animals.

    Due to the modest quantities of taxidermy work produced by Tocher and Tocher, it is quite rare to find an example of their work today, however an item may appear for sale occasionally at an auction house or online. There could be a few examples of their work in some museums around the world.

    The trophy wall at the Secunderabad Club in India has some examples of their work on display.
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2018
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  2. AfricaHunting.com

    AfricaHunting.com AH ENABLER FOUNDER AH Ambassador

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    TOCHER AND TOCHER PRICE LIST 1954

    Tocher-And-Tocher-1954-01.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-1954-02.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-1954-03.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-1954-04.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-1954-05.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-1954-06.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-1954-07.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-1954-08.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-1954-09.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-1954-10.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-1954-11.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-1954-12.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-1954-13.jpg
     
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  3. AfricaHunting.com

    AfricaHunting.com AH ENABLER FOUNDER AH Ambassador

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    TOCHER AND TOCHER PRICE LIST

    Tocher-And-Tocher-Price-List-01.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-Price-List-02.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-Price-List-03.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-Price-List-04.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-Price-List-05.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-Price-List-06.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-Price-List-07.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-Price-List-08.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-Price-List-09.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-Price-List-10.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-Price-List-11.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-Price-List-12.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-Price-List-13.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-Price-List-14.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-Price-List-15.jpg Tocher-And-Tocher-Price-List-16.jpg
     
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  4. Shane Royle

    Shane Royle New Member

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    Some more Tocher and Tocher items

    B4A1DE43-67CC-4DCB-B1D1-34A10EDE0F3F.jpeg 7AAB2EFB-95FB-4E15-8D73-54D82CB10F82.jpeg 39225657-9329-42D6-ADDC-871B5DC9A15F.jpeg 11178DB4-A387-46B4-898B-1D1679D38185.jpeg
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 21, 2018
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  5. Ridgewalker

    Ridgewalker AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    Fascinating history. Thanks!
     
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  6. Shane Royle

    Shane Royle New Member

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    Pat Morris - taxidermy expert in the U.K wrote a short paper on an Sambar deer head mount by Tocher and Tocher.

    2D35C88B-168D-48DC-8960-B3AF02272201.jpeg 84CF826C-32A7-4DF0-90EC-9722FBDA6B34.jpeg A3310B17-C1E6-46E0-A7B0-32AF91920186.jpeg
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 21, 2018
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  7. Bullthrower338

    Bullthrower338 AH ENABLER SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Very cool indeed! Thanks for posting Jerome!
     
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  8. AfricaHunting.com

    AfricaHunting.com AH ENABLER FOUNDER AH Ambassador

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    Welcome to AH Shane Royle! Thank you for emailing me the info on TOCHER AND TOCHER to share here.
     
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  9. Ridgewalker

    Ridgewalker AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    Sorry Shane, I missed that you just joined us! You’re already adding great info to the forum!
    Thanks!
     
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  10. cpr0312

    cpr0312 AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    Thanks for sharing! Really neat to see older brochures and pics like this!
     
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  11. Shane Royle

    Shane Royle New Member

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    CA379E2C-5196-4149-B05F-D8BF8CC8F083.jpeg
    A T&T Tiger head mount . Photo courtesy of Pat Morris.
     
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  12. Shane Royle

    Shane Royle New Member

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    F323F55A-48E2-48CE-BBF1-2DDCAE663B96.png
    A T&T leopard rug
     
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  13. Shane Royle

    Shane Royle New Member

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    5B393A07-7ED0-4832-8FD8-2A0BF225779E.jpeg A T&T head mount I saw on EBay recently not sure if it’s a Fox , or some type of Coyote or Jackal ? Looks a bit like me on a Monday morning!
     

  14. kevin masters

    kevin masters BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Enthusiast

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    very cool history!
     
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  15. Yaseen

    Yaseen AH Veteran

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    Welcome aboard Shane.
     
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  16. Shane Royle

    Shane Royle New Member

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    8F1DFFA5-F968-41AB-9DE4-23FD48DCFCFF.jpeg A T&T leopard skin rug made by my grandfather Herbert Tocher which I was lucky enough to purchase last year.
     

  17. Shane Royle

    Shane Royle New Member

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    8E9EF0A9-8804-49FA-BBE0-BEB9750C966E.jpeg Mounted Sambar deer antlers by T&T on my wall at home.
     

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