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Need Help: Late 40's Gibson LG-2


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Hi there (this is my first post).


I have what I believe is a 1947-48 Gibson LG-2. I have had a hard time verifying exactly what year it was made because there is little go on. I have no numbers inside the guitar to work with.


This guitar was an import into Canada. I do not know if that makes a difference in the numbering system, or if they just did not put any data with this particular year. I did see one other LG-2 from 1946 which was a Canadian import that also did not have any information.


The reason I think it is a 47 or 48 is because of some strangeness going on with the headstock logo. It has the modern style Gibson logo, yet if you look in the right light, you can see an older style Gibson logo underneath in the finish!


I found this to be truly strange. I believe they had fazed out the old logos by 1948, so this is my best guess on the year, combined with everything else I know.


The guitar itself is in excellent shape. Here are a few links to some basic images of the guitar.





I do have a photo of the strange headstock logo, but it is not as clear as you can see it in person.


I have a hard case, but I believe it is not original (maybe it is?) I am not really concerned with the case.

So my questions would be, do I have the year right? Am I on the right track? Is there anything I can do to verify years without any numbers inside the guitar?


Any ideas on what something like this would be worth these days? If you need any extra information, just ask me.




P.S. I still can't believe how good this little bugger sounds.

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Welcome to the Forum. Judging by the yellowing of the binding it certainly could be an old fellow. It's a really nice looking guitar. Others here with way more knowledge of the vintage Gibbys can probably help you in your quest.


Edited to add this website:http://www.provide.net/~cfh/gibson6.html


just scroll down to the LG models. This is a great site, by the way.

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I tried to take a photo of the "double logo". It is a bit difficult to get the camera to macro focus and get the flash to show the hidden logo, but this photo shows it a bit. It is very easy to see in person.




See what I mean with the old logo underneath? Weird.


I have this info for J-45's (not what I have) but I believe they logo changes were during the same time for this model too.



1948 J-45 specs: newer post-war gold "Gibson" block logo.


I can take images of other aspects if anyone wants them.

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Pretty Cool! There must have been an extra neck from 1946 - or else the wrong decal was mistakenly put on the guitar and then 'corrected'. FWIW, I have a 1948 LG2 in similar- very good condition - without a serial number or FON. Perhaps these guitars were considered so entry level that they didn't always bother with numbering them.?

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Yes, the entry level aspect probably played a part in the spotty record keeping. I also believe during this time period the record keeping was bad for other models too.


This little guitar still impresses me though. Probably the best guitar I have heard of similar size.

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Hey, Welcome to the forum! That is some strangeness...with the logos. I guess it is possible that someone refinished the headstock and applied a newer logo decal a long time ago? It is obvious that the black was sprayed over the 'older' logo. Nice looking guitar, RRod

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I don't think it was refinished as the import stamp "MADE IN THE U.S.A." still appears fine on the back of the headstock.


I am thinking that the old logo was not visible when it was new, but slowly became apparent over time as the finish aged. Or it could be a partial refinish, who knows?


Here are some more photos.














Inside (no markings)


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I have been discussing this on another forum and a user told me that this might be a guitar that an employee built for themselves. I do not really believe this, but the idea intrigued me.


Are there actually examples of guitars employees built that are..... unconventional? I am not talking about modern guitars, but rather older ones. (1940's etc)

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I have some details in books about the logo changes but never any mention of the change happening during production - in other words nothing to support the idea that the headstock was resprayed and then a new logo applied over a fresh coat of black at the factory.


Still, the finish checking and the clean edges on the tuner ferrules give me the impression that this headstock appears to be in original condition.


The guitar looks like one would expect for a 40's original Gibson, but the lack of markings on the neck joint suggests other possible conclusions.


I can't see any sign of a neck reset, so the idea that a different neck had the numbers sanded off before being applied to this body seems senseless - and that leads me to the same conclusion as someone else suggested - an employee guitar.


I can picture a worker deciding to make a guitar with a discontinued neck, new over spray and a new logo decal so their self-made guitar would be current with production models. Even my Gibson Trojan (really rare and really poorly documented) has an FON on the heel block.

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I guess my only question with the employee creation theory is.... how did it get sent to Canada? Unless they decided they did not want it, and sent it on its way.



Can anyone provide links to stories about these employee guitar oddities or any images? That would be great. I did a little searching but could not come up with anything.


Would this headstock oddity increase the value or decrease it? I imagine it would be hard to explain what is going on when trying to sell it.


Also there appears to be an O (letter) or 0 (number) on the very top of the headstock along the edge. I have read about other markings being on a headstock, but never an O or 0.


This could be unrelated though... I am not sue what it is. I found it when looking it over for any marks. I do not have a photo of it. (its harder to see than the double logo)

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Very cool! Here's my guess--which is not in any way educated--simply submitted as my "pool" entry for when you get the answer:


Whoever created the guitar had an initial idea of completely covering up the '46 script logo with the newer block logo to conceal the fact that they were using old stock--so as not to decrease the value of the guitar. Either for sale to the public, or even as an employee guitar; they wanted it to appear to be "This Year's Model."

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On another fourm, concerning this same guitar, I said basicaly"welcome to the world of Gibson".

I also own a great LG-2, which has a confused birthday. Not a banner, has block style letters. Also no interior label, no serial# stamp, no heel-block #s, no interior pencil markings, nothing!

So I call it my 48 thru 52 model LG-2.

My dad bought it used in the early 60's, It was my first experience with a really good guitar, (only had played old Muskeeter Resonators, Stellas, Kays,ect.) I now own it, and it is still spoiling me everyday.

Because I would never part with it, age dates and dollar values mean nothing. Its like a old comfortable pair of shoes as we have been together for around 45 years. We both now have a lot of finish cracks, I've improved a little, and she's improved a lot, and blossomed into a mighty fine, finger-style, Blues guitar.


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Regarding your question about how the guitar came to Canada, I can only say that during the late 40s and early 50s many Canadian musicians were in the US making their names. The idea that someone could buy a guitar in the US and bring it home seems pretty normal to me.


Why would an employee guitar be available (if that is what it is, of course)? Well, find out what kind of wages the people made at Gibson during that era and it might all make even more sense.


The two most rare and most valuable guitars I have ever located [1935 Trojan Gibson (1of39) and a 1969 Martin D-41 (1of31) in Brazilian] were found in really small towns. I can only venture to guess that isolated people had a lot of time to play music and would graduate to a high end instrument more easily than a spoiled city slicker. I like to think they got the cash for these fine instruments from making moonshine - and that fantasy would explain all the finish checking as they were out playing around the still.


Never question the find or the location. Just smile.

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Thanks for all the great posts everyone, this forum is really helpful.


This guitar did come from a rural community. I have noticed a few of them around where I live. There are not many places you could get a Gibson around my area a long time ago.


This little guitar does sound great. It continues to impress me.

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I would call your LG a 1947. 1946 was the old style script logo without the banner. Some guitars like your LG have the new block logo over the old Scipt logo. I have a J 45 like this and have seen others. Guitar looks to be all original including this double logo. It is an export model. Not an employee model, regular production.


I have found that 46,47 guitars do not have a FON (factory order number) on the neck block. No idea why.



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