Anyone have any info on this Harp Guitar Trademark instrument?

A gentlemen brought this guitar into my shop today to get some info on it. A lengthy search through the internet provided no useful info other than a picture of a similar guitar. I'm using the picture I found online for convenience. If anyone has any info on it they would be willing to share I'd really appreciate it. Thanks.


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Could be affilliated w/Lyon Healy/ Washburn connection?
Yeah, I had the same thought. There aren't any other markings to identify it with. (including any info inscribed on the underside of the soundboard). It clearly wasn't an expensive instrument. There is no binding on the top or back; super minimal rosette, and just that lone ivory inlay on the back of the peghead with the brand.
I just bought one of these today in Cleveland.

(Sorry to resurrect such a dead thread)

I was out of town visiting family. The one I got KILLS. It plays and sounds amazing.

How was that one? I would love to know more about it as well.

Here's some pics.
real heavy V neck right ? looks great is int that Brazilian Rose I am Guessing due to the early date of Johns life guess is that people did not tend to bring loads of EIR to the Americas until maby after the war to end all wars ww1 after 1919.when shipping lanes were transited with Trade goods from Europe and Arab Nations .I am working on a newer Washburn  my guess is 1940s not sure the year but I could just Imagine the Tone of that guitar your talking about .I would love to learn more about this Guy John keep going I am Learning something here .

Yeah, A really heavy V.


It plays amazing. The tone is very light and resonant. Not boomy, but balanced. I played a vintage Martin D-35 and a Lariv parlor side by side to make sure I wasn't just crazy. It killed both of them. ;)


The shop I bought it in had it tagged as 1890's, but I wasn't sure. It's hard to know why they tagged it. The shop had sold six months ago due to the owner's death. The manager told me it was there when they got the place. (Same tag) The John F S thing seems right. Everything I can find by that company (brass, etc.) stopped in 1914.


At any rate, it's the first guitar I've bought in a long time to not fix or sell. The tone was so good, I couldn't pass it up.


I paid $1050 for it. Too much? Not that I really care much. I like it, so it was worth what I paid for it! ;)



that's is a good price

Here's what I can turn up. It's a John F. Stratton guitar  ????

"Q: I have a guitar that is labeled "Harp Guitars" on a circular decal on the back of its headstock. EE
A: John F. Stratton was a New York City musical instrument manufacturer and wholesaler in business 1860-1914 by himself and with partners. His trademark of a Harp and the initials "J F S" was granted in 1879."

Talks about the company a bit.


I would love any other info.

Not wanting to be the guy to throw water on this but the label described by Mugwumps and this label don't match up totally. The John F. Stratton thing is now being accepted as gospel if you Google this and I'm not totally sure it should be. I'd be a little more comfortable if somone had the label with the letters on it. I haven't found that yet. I love these anonymous little parlor guitars.

Do you have some info that points otherwise?


I've found more websites with them and they all point to the same conclusion. A friend sent me an old string paper package from the JFS company. It has a drawing on it that appears to be the same guitar I have.


I would love more info! Please let me know!

The problem with all the websites I've found is that they seem to have based their information on the same site, Mugwumps. Now, the string package pciture would be some great information, can you post that?

Not really proof exactly, but it does look alot like the guitar I have.


I guess I'm treating it as innocent until proven guilty. Who knows?



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