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Dickinson Wheatstone Piccolo English On Ebay


RP3
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Just spotted this new listing:

 

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Wheatstone-43-Key-Piccolo-English-Concertina-W-6-Fold-Bellows-/290846566383?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item43b7ce67ef

 

Looks to be in excellent condition, but the owner doesn't know much about concertinas. So, there's some kind of story there.

 

Ross Schlabach

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This concertina, number 60106, was owned from new by the late Glad Thorp. From Glad's estate it was acquired by the late David Lee. Subsequently, it came to Chris Algar.

Chris put it up on ebay but it got no bids. Later, Chris told me he had sold it to a film production company, for use in the film Prometheus. That is as much as I know about it.

If it has been in the hands of the film company props department, I expect it might have had some rough handling.

 

- John

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Wow! A concertina with an interesting provenance. I even saw the movie. Ross Schlabach

But you didn't see THAT concertina. It was an Edeophone in the flick. Now whether the piccolo ended up on the editing floor would be an interesting question....

 

Greg

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Info from seller

 

Dear danersen,

 

The concertina was given to me as a gift. I contacted the manufacturer to get some information on the instrument. I was told that it was manufactured in August 1985 for a woman named Gladys Thorpe who is now deceased.

 

- kanan5

 

To: kanan5

Subject: Other: danersen sent a message about Wheatstone 43 Key Piccolo English Concertina W/6 Fold Bellows #290846566383

Sent Date: Jan-17-13

 

Dear kanan5,

 

Hello,

With your stating that you are not knowledgable about concertinas, I am curious how/why you acquired this concertina.

Do you know the ownership history of this concertina?

Always best to know how a seller came to own something for which there is no return option.

Thanks.

Edited by danersen
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Info from seller

 

Dear danersen,

 

The concertina was given to me as a gift. I contacted the manufacturer to get some information on the instrument. I was told that it was manufactured in August 1985 for a woman named Gladys Thorpe who is now deceased.

 

- kanan5

 

"I contacted the manufacturer"......it sounds too clinical and distant...as if the manufacturer was the owner of some Asian factory or sweat shop. The manufacturer is the esteemed and revered Steve Dickinson....

 

 

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I have contacted Chris Algar about this discussion , asking for his opinion. this is his reply:


-----Original Message----- From: John Wild Sent: Saturday, January 19, 2013 1:26 PM To: Chris Algar - Barleycorn Subject: Re: Wheatstone piccolo number 60106
On 19/01/2013 11:53, Chris Algar - Barleycorn wrote:
Dear John, I too got a shock when I saw it. I sold it to Fox Productions for Prometheus but they did later buy a metal-ended Edeophone from me which was actually used in the film.
I was told by the buyer that all these prop purchases would be stored in a container and then sold at auction some years later.
I can see no reason that this instrument should be available for sale in the U.S but then I guess all sorts of things can happen and I have no knowledge of any fraud. Chris

 

This adds another link in the chain to complete the history, but does not complete it and does not prove a scam. However, i would still be doubtful.

 

regards

 

John

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I sent the following to the seller via eBay messages in hopes of receiving more/clarifying information.

 

Hello,

Thank you for your reply and the information provided. As you might imagine, the community of concertina players is very small and there is quite a bit of interest surrounding this concertina as its particular size and the prominence of its builder make it a very recognizable instrument. The history among those who previously owned this specific concertina is quite clear from the original owner, whom you noted, up to its sale by a dealer to a movie production company. That is where the history ends until your eBay auction posting which has generated an interest in its travels from the movie production company to you. Hence, my inquiry to you. Additionally, because there are seldom receipts or documentation related to private transactions, caution when purchasing such a recognizable instrument is always in order. It could be very helpful to your prospects for a sale to have the greatest possible reassurance that, if purchased, the legitimacy of its ownership will not at some later time come into question because of previously unknown events or circumstances. Any more information in this regard that you may have and are able to provide will be most helpful.

Be Well.

Edited by danersen
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Reply from seller via eBay messages follows:

 

I work in the film and television industry and so does the person that gave it to me. I did a little research of my own after receiving your first message, and I did find that it was indeed sold to be a prop of a movie production. Although it was never screen used I guess it's generating a bit of buzz.

 

 

I sent the following to the seller via eBay messages in hopes of receiving more/clarifying information.

Hello,

Thank you for your reply and the information provided. As you might imagine, the community of concertina players is very small and there is quite a bit of interest surrounding this concertina as its particular size and the prominence of its builder make it a very recognizable instrument. The history among those who previously owned this specific concertina is quite clear from the original owner, whom you noted, up to its sale by a dealer to a movie production company. That is where the history ends until your eBay auction posting which has generated an interest in its travels from the movie production company to you. Hence, my inquiry to you. Additionally, because there are seldom receipts or documentation related to private transactions, caution when purchasing such a recognizable instrument is always in order. It could be very helpful to your prospects for a sale to have the greatest possible reassurance that, if purchased, the legitimacy of its ownership will not at some later time come into question because of previously unknown events or circumstances. Any more information in this regard that you may have and are able to provide will be most helpful.

Be Well.

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Two thoughts:

  1. If this concertina has only been for sale once on the internet -- by Chris A., -- then it seems to me that the seller must actually have the instrument, based on the number of pictures posted. I don't recall that Chris ever posts more than two photos, so all or most of those in the current auction can't have been taken from Chris' auction.
  2. But there's still the question of ownership. If the film company says they auction off such props, then did the seller's friend have the right to give it away, or is it actually "stolen goods"? I think the seller would be wise to get documentation from the film company that they have officially abandoned all claim to this concertina.
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Just received this note from the seller via eBay messages

 

I have decided to take the concertina off the auction block. Your earlier messages got me questioning a few circumstances regarding the item. Before I put the concertina up for auction I want to be 100% sure that the person I received it from acquired it in a legitimate way. I wasn't completely aware of the value of the item myself and I don't think he was either. I want to thank you for bringing this to light for me, I am a fair and honest person and something in my gut is telling me that I am doing the right thing by unlisting it.

Edited by danersen
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..... or perhaps he got an offer he could not refuse??? I would have loved to see the insides of this concertina to see if it has reeds in it. Many Hollywood "props" do not actually work. It would have been a shame to buy a Steve Dickinson concertina with no reeds...just a box. The concertina used in the film Promethus did make a few sounds.

It will have had reeds when it arrived at the production company.

 

- John

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Just received this note from the seller via eBay messages

 

I have decided to take the concertina off the auction block. Your earlier messages got me questioning a few circumstances regarding the item. Before I put the concertina up for auction I want to be 100% sure that the person I received it from acquired it in a legitimate way. I wasn't completely aware of the value of the item myself and I don't think he was either. I want to thank you for bringing this to light for me, I am a fair and honest person and something in my gut is telling me that I am doing the right thing by unlisting it.

Well done on your carefully worded questioning. We will have to hope that sometime the prospective seller comes back with the full story!

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