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Patrick Brown

Horniman Museum Website

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There is a very nice looking english concertina in the featured

objects section of the Horniman Museum website. The little article

about the concertina doesn't say when its from, but I think the

museum acquired it in 1996.

thought y'all might want to have a look at it.

Wheatstone 48-keyed English Concertina

 

patrick

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The little article about the concertina doesn't say when its from ...

Though the Horniman Museum have also issued a post card of this concertina, on which it is dated to "c. 1861".

 

I think the museum acquired it in 1996.

Then it is one of the instruments from Neil Wayne's former Concertina Museum Collection. The post card shows clearly that the instrument has glass buttons, and looking at the Concertina Museum catalogue, # C201 from that Collection, Wheatstone # 10660, seems the most likely candidate.

 

It would have been top-of-the range at the time, sometimes referred to as the "concert model", or descibed by collectors as the "Patent bellows model" because of the "C. Wheatstone, Patentees and Inventors" imprint to be found on one of the bellows papers.

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Anne has a concertina that is the spit and image of this one. I can't remember the number, about 9800 I think. It has a lovely gentle tone, a singer's instrument rather than a session box.

 

Chris

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Thank y'all for the info.

I just thought it was a gorgeous concertina.

I like the idea of glass keys. very sophisticated.

was that common with 'concert models?' Are the

keys opaque or translucent?

 

patrick

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I like the idea of glass keys. very sophisticated.was that common with 'concert models?'

It was an optional extra, normally they were silver.

 

Are the keys opaque or translucent?

They were made of translucent glass, with colour usually applied underneath so that the accidentals appeared black, the C's red and the remaining naturals clear.

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They were made of translucent glass, with colour usually applied underneath so that the accidentals appeared black, the C's red and the remaining naturals clear.

That's a good description of Anne's. I should add that Anne doesn't actually like them very much. They look really good, but they have a flat top and fairly abrupt edges that are less comfortable than the usual slightly domed buttons.

 

Chris

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I like the idea of glass keys. ... Are the keys opaque or translucent?
They were made of translucent glass, with colour usually applied underneath so that the accidentals appeared black, the C's red and the remaining naturals clear.

I think the correct word is "transparent", not "translucent".

 

While old Wheatstones with glass buttons were made like that, the glass buttons in later high-end Lachenals had a different construction: glass rod in a brass base, with rounded top, and no added color.

post-13-1106992756_thumb.jpg

The button on the right is from a 48-button Edeophone English, while the one on the left is from a 70-button New Model Maccann.

Edited by JimLucas

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They were made of translucent glass, with colour usually applied underneath so that the accidentals appeared black, the C's red and the remaining naturals clear.

FWIW I've just checked Anne's (no. 10680, BTW). The naturals are not clear, they are positively coloured white. None of the buttons are clear as such, and the tops are dead flat.

 

Chris

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I am nearly weeping at the beauty of that instrument. Thanks for posting!

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... Anne doesn't actually like them very much. They look really good, but they have a flat top and fairly abrupt edges that are less comfortable than the usual slightly domed buttons.

" ... the invention and introduction by Messrs. C. W. & Co., of rounded or spherical-ended keys, which, having no square or sharp edges to impede the movements of the fingers, give a most pleasant and comfortable feeling to the touch, and have facilitated the rendering of difficult passages, which previously required much practice" was a later 19th century development, prior to which concertina buttons had flat tops and sharp edges.

 

I like the idea of glass keys. ... Are the keys opaque or translucent?
They were made of translucent glass, with colour usually applied underneath so that the accidentals appeared black, the C's red and the remaining naturals clear.

I think the correct word is "transparent", not "translucent".

Perhaps it would have been more correct to say that the glass is clear and the buttons are translucent, but I was trying to respond directly to the question.

 

While old Wheatstones with glass buttons were made like that, the glass buttons in later high-end Lachenals had a different construction:  glass rod in a brass base, with rounded top, and no added color.

No, the construction is the same, they were all made by Lachenal's after all, but the bases of the buttons were not coloured on the later instruments.

 

I am nearly weeping at the beauty of that instrument. Thanks for posting!

There are many just like it, though they more commonly have metal buttons, some labelled C. Wheatsone & Co., some labelled Louis Lachenal, but all made by Louis Lachenal.

 

They were also made in ebony, and even in amboyna.

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I am nearly weeping at the beauty of that instrument. Thanks for posting!

Get your handkerchief ready, here's a picture of Anne's:-

 

annetina.jpg

 

(The little white bits are gloves - or perhaps socks - of a fine suede leather covering the thumbstraps. They were contrived by Colin D. to help with a sweaty thumb problem that Anne has).

 

Chris

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