Up for sale, an early 1900’s parlor acoustic guitar, expertly restored for optimal playability and tone, complete with a modern hardshell case. Lacking a definitive identifying marker, this guitar falls in line with Lyon & Healy, Larson Bros, and N.B. Curtiss designs of the era. A compelling vintage instrument that combines some of the most hallowed tonewoods in guitar construction, this classic centennial parlor features a solid Adirondack spruce top, solid Brazilian rosewood back and sides, a thick slab ebony fretboard, and a mahogany neck with a deep V profile. This instrument has received all of the maintenance due a guitar over 100 years old, including a professional neck reset, refret, and all cracks repaired and stabilized as needed. The guitar was converted to X-bracing in 1999, with service notes penciled on the upper bout bracing inside.
This guitar offers a very full sound that belies its body size with great projection and a dynamic, touch-sensitive response. Unlike many parlor guitars, this acoustic has a smooth, breathy treble character, due in part to the X-bracing, and the lower frequencies are focused, delivering a rich, layered sound with a sweet bloom. The softest strum yields complex, harmonically-packed midrange that sings and sustains, and while the treble strings are snappy, it's the wound strings that truly shine here, and each is defined and clear with good string-to-string separation. With 12 frets clear of the body, the guitar achieves a bell-like top detail and is an excellent choice for fingerpicked passages. Featherweight at 2lbs 15oz, this easy-playing parlor has been professionally setup here at Mike & Mike's Guitar Bar, strung with phosphor bronze 12-53 strings and dialed in for optimal action.
The mahogany neck has a prominent V-shaped profile that fills the palm comfortably, measuring .825” deep at the 1st fret and .975” at the 9th. The slab ebony fretboard has received a fresh refret, and the new slender vintage-style frets are essentially unplayed with perfectly rounded crowns. The inlay work is also a modern upgrade. The scale length is 24 3/4“, and the carved bone nut measures 1 3/4” in width. The bound slotted headstock features an ebony veneer and original open-gear strip tuners with white lollipop buttons that hold their pitch well and turn smoothly.
The rosewood pyramid bridge sits flush with the Adirondack spruce top and features a newer bone saddle. The top and back feature cream binding, and the rosette matches the center strip of marquetry on the back. The lower bout is 12 3/4" wide, and the body depth is 3 1/2", also measured at the lower bout. The Adirondack spruce top is crack-free, while there are a number of professionally addressed cracks on the back of the body, all of which have been stabilized, with spruce cleats used as necessary. The headstock also features a previous professional crack repair, and is completely stable. Cosmetically, there is requisite strum wear though the finish surrounding the sound hole, with light scattered finish scratches and nicks. The neck profile is remarkably clean, with only faint minuscule marks that are not distracting to the palm.
A modern hardshell case is included.