Jump to content

My 3 New Wheatstones


Recommended Posts

I bet the topic title made you read this, didn't it? And did you get extremely jealous? Well these Wheatstones are not quite what you think they might be.

 

A few folks have asked about these before, so here are some pictures of Wheatstone Mouth Organs. The boxes have an imperial (inches) scale underneath to give you an idea of size. The instruments are, from top to bottom, a Wheatstone Buddy miniature, a Wheatstone Wren Tremolo mouth organ - both probably late 1940s - and a rebadged Panarmonic Wren Tremolo harmonica, probably early to mid 1950s after Boosey & Hawkes reorganised the companies they owned. And all purchased from ebay during the past few months for around £25 total! Perhaps we can all have Wheatstones now?

post-119-0-04076700-1295538852_thumb.jpg

post-119-0-29777700-1295538878_thumb.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

A few folks have asked about these before, so here are some pictures of Wheatstone Mouth Organs. The boxes have an imperial (inches) scale underneath to give you an idea of size. The instruments are, from top to bottom, a Wheatstone Buddy miniature, a Wheatstone Wren Tremolo mouth organ - both probably late 1940s - and a rebadged Panarmonic Wren Tremolo harmonica, probably early to mid 1950s after Boosey & Hawkes reorganised the companies they owned.

 

The earlier Wrens have wooden combs and say Mouth Organ on the box, but later versions have a plastic comb, say Harmonica on the box and usually have the date rubber-stamped inside the lid.

 

The Panarmonic ones were made for Hohner UK, who had major import restrictions placed upon them at the time, because of which they also set up assembling Hohner harmonicas in Britain using parts from Hohner Germany. That Hohner "Panarmonic" project finished up in Loughrea, Co. Galway, Ireland supplying cheap harmonicas to the US market.

 

There are also Generation mouth Organs made using the same mouldings.

 

P.S. Didn't you get a box with your Buddy? I did! :P

Edited by Stephen Chambers
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The earier ones? You been on the Guiness at lunchtime?

 

Unfortunately there is no date stamp inside the lid. I knew about this from some that Neil Wayne showed me.

 

I'm told that Wheatstone made the injection mouldings that were on Deans & Co. Generation mouth Organs - and in pink! Quite advanced for their time!

 

No, I didn't get a box with my Buddy! But next time.... :P

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I bet the topic title made you read this, didn't it? And did you get extremely jealous? Well these Wheatstones are not quite what you think they might be.

 

A few folks have asked about these before, so here are some pictures of Wheatstone Mouth Organs. The boxes have an imperial (inches) scale underneath to give you an idea of size. The instruments are, from top to bottom, a Wheatstone Buddy miniature, a Wheatstone Wren Tremolo mouth organ - both probably late 1940s - and a rebadged Panarmonic Wren Tremolo harmonica, probably early to mid 1950s after Boosey & Hawkes reorganised the companies they owned. And all purchased from ebay during the past few months for around £25 total! Perhaps we can all have Wheatstones now?

 

Good old Father Christmas put a Wheatstone Wren Tremolo in my stocking in the mid 1940s. It may still be hidden amongst my souvenirs.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The earier ones? You been on the Guiness at lunchtime?

 

No, but I've been having an 'ell of a time with this darned computer keyboard... :unsure:

 

Now corrected! :rolleyes:

 

 

Unfortunately there is no date stamp inside the lid. I knew about this from some that Neil Wayne showed me.

 

I dug my Wrens out today and found that all my later ones, that have boxes, seem to be stamped with dates in 1948.

 

 

I'm told that Wheatstone made the injection mouldings that were on Deans & Co. Generation mouth Organs...

 

It's clearly the same moulding and Pam Deans told Pat Missin that they got them from a firm called Wheatstone in London, the reeds were from Couesnon in France and Boosey and Hawkes made the reedplates. The riveting and assembly was done in a small workshop at Bridlington, starting in 1948 but discontinuing in 1949.

 

Only the firm was called Beverley Musical Industies Ltd., at least according to their box labels...

 

 

... and in pink! Quite advanced for their time!

 

Only one of my Wheatstone Wrens (15 MAR 1948) has a pink comb, the remainder (with plastic combs) are black whilst my 3 Generations are all green.

 

 

No, I didn't get a box with my Buddy! But next time.... :P

 

Maybe you'll get the length of red cord attached to that one too... ;)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

P.S. Didn't you get a box with your Buddy? I did! :P

Well, ya-boo-sucks, I've now got a Buddy in a box *and* with a cord!!

 

Any idea who 'Cecil' might be? The box says "The Cecil Series". I thought it might have been C.E.Timms, a director of Wheatstone, and also managing director of Besson, but his first name is Charles.

 

Incidentally both my Wheatstone Wrens are in boxes marked 'Mouth Organ', with impressed 'TREMOLO' and 'MADE IN ENGLAND' markings, without dates, and with one red and one black plastic combs. My Panarmonic is marked 'Harmonica' without impressions on the box.

 

And I've also got hold of a "Hohner-Panarmonic" Lancer made in the Republic of Ireland.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Any idea who 'Cecil' might be? The box says "The Cecil Series". I thought it might have been C.E.Timms, a director of Wheatstone, and also managing director of Besson, but his first name is Charles.

 

 

Short for Cecilia, patron saint of musicians?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cecilia

http://www.wga.hu/fr.../1/cecilia.html

 

In the Netherlands lots of brass bands, choirs and so on established in the late 19th and early 20th century are called St.Cecilia or St. Caecilia.

 

250px-Vaandel_StCaeciliaHoensbroek.jpg 2729vw.jpgvaandelnieuw3klein.jpg

galaconcert%20-%20vaandel.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Nice try Leonard, but Cecil is a fairly common British male first name in the 1950s, with Cecilia being the female version.

 

He was also a (quite small) caterpillar ...

 

He was this big: [------------------]

 

...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

........

Any idea who 'Cecil' might be? The box says "The Cecil Series". I thought it might have been C.E.Timms, a director of Wheatstone, and also managing director of Besson, but his first name is Charles.

........

Hi Wes

 

Just a guess. You don't suppose it could be named after Larry Cecil Adler do you? His biography would put him in the right place at the right time. According to this article, he moved from the US to London in 1949 and remained there for the rest of his life.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Larry_Adler

 

He's the guy who made this and other songs and tunes famous.

Larry Adler plays Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L1MmpF_I8cE&fmt=18

 

Thanks

Leo :unsure:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 months later...

Just a quick postscript to this thread.

 

I've just got a Panarmonic Wren with a date inside the box - 14 March 1949. This box has Panarmonic end papers on the box lid, and the date is inside the lid, so its not a replacement. So it seems that the Wheatstone branding on the Wren must have finished a bit earlier than I'd expected.

 

Edit: After a bit more thought, I should state that this Panarmonic came from Belfast. So its possible that Wheatstone Wrens could have continued in areas other than Ireland, with the "Hohner" Panarmonic versions being marketed in Ireland.

 

Edit again: But then 'the smoking gun' - as our cousins over the water put it. Another Panarmonic, but from Manchester with 5th May 1950 in the lid!!

Edited by wes williams
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...