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timetravelmusic
03-23-2018, 04:43 PM
I bought a pile of old instruments today, including a 1920s Hohner reed saxophone, a Ludwig & Ludwig slide whistle, and an utterly foxy old soprano uke. Rope binding on front, back and soundhole ring. Herringbone-ish inlay up the fretboard. Weird peghead shape. Notably arched back. I'm guessing 1920s, but do not recognize the maker. It has no maker marks. 107525107526 Does anybody recognize it?

hoosierhills
03-23-2018, 05:04 PM
This looks like an echo brand uke that was made in Hawaii In the 1920's and 30's. There is one like it on the ukulele hall of fame website.

Ukecaster
03-23-2018, 05:07 PM
Hawaiian style to my eye, but I don't see that exact headstock shape on this database, and the body shape is not as rounded as many of those they show.

http://ukulele.org/?Reference_Desk:Vintage_Ukuleles

timetravelmusic
03-23-2018, 05:08 PM
Thanks. I'm trying to find it in the Uke Hall of Fame website right now...

Ukecaster
03-23-2018, 05:09 PM
Thanks. I'm trying to find it in the Uke Hall of Fame website right now...

http://ukulele.org/?Reference_Desk:Vintage_Ukuleles

timetravelmusic
03-23-2018, 05:12 PM
Searching for Echo uke, like Hoosierhills suggested, found me this one:
https://shop.gryphonstrings.com/products/1920s-ukulele-soprano--echo-solid-koa-fancy-soprano-ukulele--33853.
Made by Hawaiian Mahogany Company, which I'm not familiar with.

timetravelmusic
03-23-2018, 05:16 PM
Awesome! Thanks everybody. That was quick! I truly appreciate it.

Jerryc41
03-24-2018, 01:18 AM
I bought a pile of old instruments today, including a 1920s Hohner reed saxophone, a Ludwig & Ludwig slide whistle, and an utterly foxy old soprano uke. Rope binding on front, back and soundhole ring. Herringbone-ish inlay up the fretboard. Weird peghead shape. Notably arched back. I'm guessing 1920s, but do not recognize the maker. It has no maker marks. 107525107526 Does anybody recognize it?

Now we know where Mainland got the idea. :)

Jerryc41
03-24-2018, 01:19 AM
http://ukulele.org/?Reference_Desk:Vintage_Ukuleles

Thanks for that link. Interesting. The site has that rope design on the left.

timetravelmusic
03-24-2018, 02:29 AM
Hey, great. I'm going with the Hawaiian Mahogany Company, or its successor, as maker. Thank you very much!

OhioBelle
03-24-2018, 05:48 AM
That's a very cool old find! Congratulations!

Can you tell if it has the patented "echo" device under the top as Gryphon describes?

spongeuke
03-24-2018, 03:35 PM
The back of this ukulele doesn't show the heal cap treatment common to Island made ukuleles of that time. I'm thinking Chicago made.

timetravelmusic
03-24-2018, 06:02 PM
OhioBelle: definitely does not have that funky Echo device. Not does it have the deep body.
Spongeuke: it does not have a heel cap. The front, back and soundhole rope binding plus herringbone-ish inlay up the fingerboard really looks like Hawaiian Mahogany Co. ukes. My default for ukes (or guitars) (or banjos) that I can't ID is Chicago: Harmony, Kay, Regal etc. But this one just doesn't look Chicago to me. Check out its weird headstock shape.

KamakOzzie
03-24-2018, 07:33 PM
I have two ukes with that type of headstock. The one on the left is a Wurlitzer. As the label shows Cincinnati-Chicago. The one on the right is labelled Super-tone, style 960(I think, faded).
My guess is Harmony, but definitely Chicago.

107579

spongeuke
03-24-2018, 07:50 PM
Spongeuke: it does not have a heel cap.
On Hawaiian made ukuleles the back has a short extension that covers the heel. They sometimes burned the Taboo mark inside or even on the head as mainland craftsmen were copying their work.

timetravelmusic
03-25-2018, 04:27 PM
KamakOzzie. Thanks for the photos! Yes, that's the headstock. I would reasonably assume that Wurlitzer jobbed out the manufacturing of its ukes to Harmony-Regal-Chicago. Supertone, as Sears & Roebuck's pre-1940ish house brand, likely did the same. You're starting to convince me that mine is Chicago, not Hawaiian made. I can't quite tell from your photos though. Are yours Koa wood like mine? Did Harmony do rope binding or herringbone inlay, as on mine? Thank you!

Sponeuke: Interesting about the heel cap. I did not know that was a trademark of Hawaiian manufacture. Thank you!

KamakOzzie
03-25-2018, 07:00 PM
KamakOzzie. Thanks for the photos! Yes, that's the headstock. I would reasonably assume that Wurlitzer jobbed out the manufacturing of its ukes to Harmony-Regal-Chicago. Supertone, as Sears & Roebuck's pre-1940ish house brand, likely did the same. You're starting to convince me that mine is Chicago, not Hawaiian made. I can't quite tell from your photos though. Are yours Koa wood like mine? Did Harmony do rope binding or herringbone inlay, as on mine? Thank you!



Martin also made Wurlitzer "stencilled" ukes, but this is not one of those. The Super-Tone is plain mahogany with no binding at all. The Wurlitzer is ribbon mahogany. You can see the binding and rosette in the pictures. Plays great, sounds great and holds tuning with the best of them. The only thing I miss is there are NO fret markers.

107595107596107597

timetravelmusic
03-26-2018, 05:53 AM
Bill KamakOzzie,
That's a foxy little uke! And it has the same funky headstock shape as mine, basically. If I'm not mistaken, I think mine is koa wood, though, not mahogany.