I don’t really know what this is, but it is cool…
October 7, 2009
The difference between an Architectural Folly and an Architectural Follies
October 13, 2009

Long Island Duck

Well, I’ve heard of Long Island Duckling, but not until my friend Charlie (who can identify himself further in the comments, if he likes) sent me a collection of links had I heard of the Long Island Duck or The Big Duck. The pictures are great, but this duck has quite a story and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The_Big_DuckDuck farmer Martin Maurer built this 20-ft. high, 30-ft. long, concrete-over-wooden frame “duck”  in 1931 to use it as a shop. It now seems to be a County Park or National Park. It seems she gets seriously decorated at Christmas time.

The Big Duck is on Route 24 in Flanders, Long Island, NY, USA. Apparently not far from the Muffler Man.

Maurer drew his inspiration from similar structures he had seen in California, particularly a building shaped like a giant coffeepot. Maurer patented his creation, and in the world of architecture, any building shaped like its product is referred to as a “duck.”

I’ve been in love with these types of Follies since I worked on the Broadway production of Wally’s Café as an undergraduate. Wow, there’s a great topic for another post.


  1. Charlie Wittreich says:

    It was nice to hear about Kevin’s interest in weird architecture. Though I never studied it closely I think it sparked my young imagination when on family trips. The pure creativity and determination of those who built these roadside places showed me how images and architecture became part of the zeitgeist. I thought it was pretty powerful stuff.

  2. kla says:

    Breaks in the long landscapes of road trips, my first experience as well. I’m not a roadside scholar either, but ‘serious’ Follies have shown up on historic sites I’ve interpreted.

  3. mickey says:

    you know we used this duck in Maggie and the Ferocious Beast…LOL…