Magazine article Acoustic Guitar

American Icons

Magazine article Acoustic Guitar

American Icons

Article excerpt

C.F. Martin & Company's Nazareth, Pennsylvania, factory has long been a mecca for acoustic guitarists, and earlier this winter, Vintage Instruments, in downtown Philadelphia, became a Martin annex of sorts. On December 1st and 2nd, the shop held a free exhibit of Martin guitars made between 1834 and 1870, the largest exhibition of these instruments outside of the company's in-house museum. The guitars were from the personal collections of the shop's owner (and instrument appraiser on PBS's Antique Roadshow), Fred Oster, and Peter Szego, co-editor of Inventing the American Guitar: The Pre-Civil War Innovations of C.F. Martin.

Vintage Instruments is located in a stately Aesthetic Movement/Queen Anne-style house, built in 1882-a fitting setting for three dozen 19th century instruments presented in three rooms of the shop's first floor. It was thrilling to see the guitars sitting on their stands atop long tables. A crowd of enthusiasts, collectors, and musicians-among them former Martin archivist Dick Boak-gathered around the instruments as Fred Oster looked on. …

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