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Montgomery Wards Gibson?

#1 User is offline   adot45 

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Posted 30 January 2009 - 02:53 PM

Hello, looking for information on an older guitar. It says Montgomery Wards inside on one side and a partially illegible number which could be 393G 21 with the 21 being in red or it could be 1930 21 on the other side which would make it fit the era the owner thinks it is. Its an archtop style.

#2 User is offline   dem00n 

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Posted 30 January 2009 - 03:00 PM

Welcome to the fourms also we need pics.
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#3 User is offline   adot45 

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 02:10 AM

I have pictures but I don't see how to add them to a post.

#4 User is offline   adot45 

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 07:43 AM

Here is a picture of it:

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#5 User is offline   elantric 

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 08:09 AM

During the period between 1930-1956 Gibson used to supply guitar bodies to many Chicago area guitar companies, like Kay, Valco, National, Harmony - and these would be sold in mail order catalogs by Montgomery Ward and Sears Roebuck.

You have an example of this type guitar - looks like a Harmony neck, Gibson Body, 1947-53 era.


This is not to say ALL arch tops made by Kay, Valco, National used Gibson Bodies - but many did.
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#6 User is offline   adot45 

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 09:03 AM

Hello, Thank You for your response, I am told by the owner that his Dad purchased the guitar in 1930~1931

#7 User is offline   elantric 

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 09:14 AM

My dates are very rough estimate


How does it sound?
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#8 User is offline   adot45 

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 09:21 AM

It has the most pleasant sound that I have ever had the pleasure of hearing. I was shocked to see the Montgomery Wards sticker inside the body. And you have provided very relative and useful information. The tuners say "GROVER" on them. Thank You

#9 User is offline   adot45 

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Posted 03 February 2009 - 02:11 AM

Thank You for your response elantric and others for interest as well. I started to help my friend figure out what this guitar might be without any notion or idea what it might be. It's been very interesting and I've spent hours and hours on the internet looking at pictures, reading articles, etc. As for right now I have an idea that it is a Recording King which were made by Gibson. Gibson was scrambling as all companies were post depression to keep above water and I see it's a well known fact that they produced whole guitars and guitar bodies for many retailers and mail order houses and even other instrument manufactures. The neck inlays on my friends guitar are very similar to a picture of a 1938 Recording King, actually, they are identical, even the inlays on the top piece are exactly the same. As for now, I am pursuing this as the guitar being a Recording King and will see where that takes me. Thanks to all who showed an interest.

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#10 User is offline   adot45 

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Posted 04 February 2009 - 10:21 AM

I am pretty sure I have nailed the mystery down now. And yes, the Cromwell's are close in appearence but compare this 1937 Recording King with the guitar above on the left. And it was manufactured by Gibson. Thanks to all who helped.

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