Archive for the ‘Historical Makers’ Category

The Lyric Harp Guitar, or The Flying Beehees and Other Stories

While a “harp guitar” in name only (yes, I research those also!), this one has been an ongoing fascination of mine. Not so much because of the instrument, but because of the story: a unique, multi-generational tale that spans two centuries (three, since I’m publishing this just now) and seems so quintessentially American. I included an […]

Name That Harp Guitar!

(The reason for my arched eyebrow will become clear soon enough…) Bogen, shmogen! Yes, I’ve revised my stance re the “nomenclature” for the newest Miner Museum treasure: a 1908 Karl Müller (Augsburg) copy of a Friedrich Schenk “bogengitarre.” Schenk’s original c.1850 instrument is a stunning and indescribable design that many German luthiers revisited some decades […]

Women in Harp Guitar History: Italy and Beyond

Thanks to Bruce Hammond for the wonderful Guest Blog on Grace Ravlin, Fine Artist and Bohmann Harp Guitar Player. And now back to our regularly scheduled program. Here is the last of my collected historical images of historical female harp guitar players – from Italy, then on to Russia! We begin in a land that I […]

Women in Harp Guitar History: Grace Ravlin, Transcendent Artist

The sixth in my special series celebrating women harp guitarists for 2021’s Women’s History Month features guest author Bruce Hammond, expert and collaborator on all things related to the world famous yet still enigmatic Chicago harp guitar maker Joseph Bohmann. This is a single-artist profile on a remarkable young woman who went from harp guitar-playing […]

Women in Harp Guitar History: An Assortment of American Harp Guitarists

Thanks for joining me in No. 5 in a series of celebrating women harp guitarists! We last visited Central Europe for thirty incredible images, and now return to the States, circa 18950-1920. After focusing on Gibson, Dyer and Knutsen instruments, I’ll now finish up with the many other American brands along with a couple “one-offs.” […]

Women in Harp Guitar History: Schrammelgitarristinnen!

We last celebrated the (mostly) American women who played those amazing Gibson harp guitars from about 1905-1925. Now we travel to Central Europe to look at the wide variety of musical groups where women took on the role of accompaniment on their many forms of kontragitarren, i.e.: “contra guitars,” sometimes called “bass (or contrabass) guitars” […]

Women in Harp Guitar History: Gibson Gals

Harp Guitarists in Women’s History Month continues from last episode’s hollow arm harp guitar players to the world’s most famous and historically popular harp guitar of all time: The Gibson! And, if anything, the proportion of female players of these instruments was even higher – despite the instruments being dramatically larger. Much has already been […]

Women in Harp Guitar History: Dyer and Knutsen Players

We continue celebrating Women’s “Harp Guitar” History Month with past players of what has become today’s most popular vintage HG: the W. J. Dyer & Bro. Symphony harp guitar!  As I’ve found just four female players to date, I’ll follow them with the related Dyer predecessors – the Knutsen hollow arm harp guitars. (All but the […]

Women in Harp Guitar History: Introduction

Welcome to the first in a series as I celebrate Women’s History Month with an incredible collection of almost one hundred images of women playing harp guitars throughout history. I have so much to catch up on! I’ve been collecting and posting images of historical harp guitar players for 17 years now. The variety and […]

The Invincible Four

Looking for something to celebrate 2021’s Black History Month, I went back through my files to see if there was anything harp-guitar-related that I might have somehow missed. Indeed there was. It was this second image of the “Greater Invincible Concert Company” that I had neglected to add with the other stunning image of the […]


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