• Considered by many to be most charming, intimate, 19th century Martin parlor guitar, the Martin 3-17 features Brazilian Rosewood back and sides, Adirondack spruce top, and Jerome tuners. This particular instrument, with an unbelievably beautiful, lyrical voice, was made in the early 1850’s, as we can tell by several clues. It’s a lot like Mark Twain’s famous Martin 2 ½-17 (see photo). Of course, it has to have the “CF Martin New York” not “CF Martin & Co” stamps– as this one does, to make it a pre-1867 Martin. Also, according to Martin scholars, Jerome tuners seem to have faded out by the late 1850s, to be replaced with similar tuners with a shorter plate and no name stamp. It is unusual on this guitar that the Jerome tuners are German silver, as most of the style 17 guitars have brass tuners. With the “tulip-shaped” tuner buttons, experts date the guitar to the early 1850s. The top is fan braced. Measurements are: body length 17.25″, lower bout width 11.125″, upper bout width 8.25″, overall length 35.75″, scale length just shy of 24 inches. 12 fret cedar neck with ice cream cone heel. Note that the black paint on the back of the neck and back of headstock was removed in some previous century– that does give a nice look at the cedar that would normally be obscured by the black “ebonized” paint. The body of the guitar had some overspray, but it turned out go be one of those fortunate occasions where it was light and really just sitting on top of the original finish, so we are able to easily remove it and reveal the original finish. A couple of small hairline cracks in back, repaired. Top and sides are crack-free. Reproduction ebony bridge. Original bar frets. Original Jerome Silver tuners, with original buttons. Original bracing and bridge plate. “C.F. MARTIN / NEW YORK” hot stamped on back, inside back brace and heel block (but the back stamp is faded). A previous owner of this guitar had a custom hard shell case made– it’s a professional quality, premium case that protects the guitar quite well– it’s heavy and sturdier than most new expensive hard shell cases. Historical interest aside (pre-civil war Martin guitars are rare), this guitar plays wonderfully. It projects the sweetest, but robust, glassy trebles, and clear mids and bass notes. It’s just a joy to play, and it just floats in your hands. (Note: 19th century Martins can be fitted with: gut strings, classical guitar strings, or extra light steel strings– depending on the guitar. It’s really a case-by-case basis, determining whether a particular 19th century Martin can “hold” or “withstand” very light gauge steel strings for example. One size does not fit all. And different 19th century Martins sound better with different strings. In this case, with this particular guitar, extra light steel strings are perfect. It can hold them fine– due to the structure of the top, the bridge plate, and bridge. And it plays and sounds perfect with those strings. This guitar is real find in that regard– not for the collector’s wall but for the player who wants to experience what the original CF Martin felt when he held this instrument in his hands in Nazareth, Pennsylvania, when Abraham Lincoln had not the slightest inkling he’d be in the White House and was just forging a reputation as an outstanding lawyer and earning the nickname of ‘Honest Abe’, and the New York Times was just commencing operations, and the first oil well had just been drilled in the United States by “Colonel” Edwin Drake in Titusville, Pennsylvania– that despite being in C.F. Martin’s state was darn near the old west at the time. In a custom made, professional quality hard shell case.
  • Out of stock
    1957 Martin D-18 Guitar with Original Red Spruce Top   Read the full description below. If you're interested in this guitar, please call 512.922.8596 or contact us here.
  • Out of stock
    Circa 1860 guitar, style 3 built by well known luthier James Ashborn of Wolcottville, CT, for William Hall & Son music store. Brazilian rosewood back and sides; Adirondack top; maple binding. Rare Brazilian rosewood veneered neck. 100% original, including all original finish, and down to original nut, original bridge (and saddle) that has never been off the guitar. From an article in Vintage Guitar magazine: "Ashborn's design for the guitar was quite innovative for the early 19th century. Instead of making guitars fashioned after the typical parlor-style guitars, he made them in the Spanish style, by taking interior bracing cues from the Spanish while retaining the body of the English guitars. This included a fan brace pattern rather than the more common ladder pattern Ashborn guitars have a very complex dovetail V joint for attaching the head to the neck. The headstock was cut in roughly five steps, using some kind of tracing router, as suggested by the chatter marks on the inside ears of the pegbox. In addition to the complex head design, Ashborn made his own tuning machines in-house. They're made of brass, very much like contemporary machines, with worm gears, cog gears, and rollers. … Ashborn's shop was extremely advanced for its time, having a great deal of know-how and technology. Ashborn understood the need to have the technology as well as the skill, but more importantly he discovered a new way of making high-quality instruments that were affordable. He was able to create a factory environment where workers did what they were good at and, with practice, became very fast and consistent. With a new level of consistency in mass production, he created the path followed by other companies such as Martin, Gibson, and Taylor. Using designs ahead of his time, he was able to bring the sound and change to people who otherwise never would have been able to acquire an instrument of this quality."
  • Read the full description below. If you're interested in this guitar, please call 512.922.8596 or contact us here.
  • Out of stock
    • Cedar top
    • Depth at lower bout: 4 3/16 inches
    • Width of neck at nut: 2 inches
    • Body length: 19 3/4
  • Late 1970s, but in almost unplayed condition. Bluegrass banjo players seek out these 70’s Whyte Eagles, known for their tone and craftsmanship. It was a pretty short window of only about five years, when these banjos were made with this kind of craftsmanship. They blow away most any banjo made and marketed (from any country) in the 60s, 70s and 80s– and they show no logos on headstock– just beautiful mother of pearl. It’s the No. 4310 “Whyte Eagle”. Based on late 1920’s Vega Griffin (Tubaphone #9) style inlays, with engraved, carved heel. Sunburst finish maple banjo, Gibson-style 2 piece flange, full height 20 hole archtop tone ring, dual coordinator rods, flamed maple resonator, maple neck, chrome finish. Neck is butterfly with ebony strip on back of neck, down the center. Just set up, with new tailpiece, and new head, by Dave Trexle and ready to play: loud, clear, and bright. With original hard shell case.  
  • This 1922 Bacon & Day Serenader, tenor banjo is in great original condition. The well-worn head can be easily replaced– we retained it for originality. The banjo shows little wear. And all the parts are original–Tailpiece, tuners, dowel, everything. This is a golden era B&D, not one of the later 30s/40's banjos that are more common. In this condition it is rare. And it comes in its original hard shell case. Price: $1695.
  • This is a very well made, custom Hawaiian guitar. Made by George Bailey, and signed and dated underside of top, 2009. The body style is similar to an early Ditson. In other regards, its size, sound, and feel is quite similar to a 1930’s Martin 0-17H.
    • Mahogany back, sides, and top
    • Mahogany neck
    • Ebony fretboard
    • Ebony bridge
    • Flush frets, with raised nut and saddle, for Hawaiian playing
    • Ladder braced
    • Lower Bout width: 13 ¼ inches
    • Scale length: 25 inches
    • 1 ¾ inch nut
    • Crack-free
    With a modern hard shell case. Price: $1295.
  • Read the full description below. If you're interested in this guitar, please call 512.922.8596 or contact us here.
  • Read the full description below. If you're interested in this guitar, please call 512.922.8596 or contact us here.
  • Out of stock
    1957 Martin D-18 Guitar with Original Red Spruce Top. Read the full description below. If you're interested in this guitar, please call 512.922.8596 or contact us here.