Choice of Original, Prof. Restored Depression Era guitars - Great Condition, Character & BluesTone - ready to go "In the Workshop" for restoration, and available for "pre-order".
Selection of "Restoration to be Completed" 1920s & "Depression Era" Parlor Guitars - fully restored prices indicated below or available on request - meantime, showing photos of the selection of models available, before start of restoration - ready to go "In the Workshop" for restoration & available to "pre-order"!

A Full Set of Details of each of the guitars listed can be provided on request, but I have felt for some time that I needed to rationalise the amount of information confronting folks....hope it works for enquirers!

These "Depression Era" & earlier guitars are always interesting....the old saying about 1930s USA guitars production, in Chicago & other centres...."Many makers, large & small, all making similar guitars, using similar materials & often the same parts, sometimes making guitars for each other, all making guitars for numerous distributors, usually using distributors own brand names....and nobody was taking notes!"

I am now finding that I "pre-sell" the majority of my guitars, certainly the vintage restoration Stellas and other guitars from the same era. Hence many, but not all of the guitars I have in stock are now listed on the website, in advance of restoration, or the stage where I am still working on them. This "Pre-Order" arrangement has now worked well for a good number of years....buyers reserving guitars coming through the workshop, in advance of them being fully ready, without any formal or binding commitment, and I welcome, and thankfully receive a steady stream of enquiries.
I have sold many 1920s & 1930s from the other USA makers, apart from Harmony, including Kay, Oahu, Lyon & Healy etc.several Supertone models (Supertone was the pre-war brand of Sears, Roebuck) over the years.


NOW PRE-ORDERED! - see full details "Restoration in Progress" below - P.M.I.CO. N.Y. COLLEGIATE 1930s "LAUREL" - VTG1330 - Price on enquiry - photos 5, 6, 7 & 8....not known whether Laurel Leaf design soundhole ring is associated with the 1936 Berlin Olympics, as similar design on some Harmony guitars are thought to be. All Solid Birch, Ladder Braced construction, with slotted headstock.

P.M.I.CO. N.Y. COLLEGIATE 1930s "ARGYLE" - VTG1540 - Price on enquiry - photos 9, 10, 11, & of "Argyle" finishing design not known. Again All Solid Birch, Ladder Braced construction, but with solid peghead.

Dimensions for both Collegiate guitars.....13.25"/33.7cm. wide Lower Bout, 9.875"/25.1cm. Upper Bout, 3.25"/8.2cm. Body Depth at front, 3.5"/8.9cm. rear, and nut width is 1.75"/44.5mm., scale length approx. 635mm. or 25".

Note: the link between the Oscar Schmidt Company & P.M.I.CO. of New York "Collegiate" guitars is well known, but I don't believe they were all OS-made & need to do further research on mine....see missive on '30s USA guitar-making under "Intro" heading above!

LYON & HEALY "COLUMBUS" 1920s - VTG1052 - Price: £699 - photos 1, 2, 3 & 4 - all solid timbers, Top of European Spruce, Back of Flamed Maple, Sides are a type of Mahogany or Sapele....not entirely clear as combination of stained down timbers can be confusing, Transverse Ladder Top Bracing, V-Neck, Open Headstock, currently "In the Workshop" Professional Restoration - Another "Little Gem".....lovely Historic looks, Rope Binding, back centre-stripe, characteristic of L&H guitars. DIMENSIONS......The guitar is true "Parlor" size, 12.75"/325mm. wide Lower Bout, 9"/230mm. Upper Bout, 3.25"/8.2mm. Body Depth at front, 4"/10.2mm. rear, and nut width is 46mm., or in Imperial measurement as used by the USA makers 1 & 13/16ths. inches., scale length approx. 615mm. or 24.25".

......more details on each of them available on request. ****

Set up for either Fingerstyle Blues or Bottleneck playing, or mixture of both - these are superb sounding parlor blues guitars, with great looks, lots of vibe and historic All-American character - all original condition - an iconic Chicago made, 12 fret-to-the-body, parlor Blues Guitar - all solid Birch, ladder braced construction!
Individual condition report and repair/restoration schedules can be supplied for each of the guitars mentioned, on request.

All are in either entirely or essentially original condition....finish & colour in my view as good as you are likely to find on any guitars of this type, ranging between 75 & nearly 90 years old - inevitably there is a little edge wear to the painted bindings and other edges and minor surface chips/ the main, really the minimum for a vintage guitar of this type and age, and I've seen quite a few! I hope that you will agree that the photos show that these remain handsome & characterful vintage guitars.

All the guitars are inspected in conjunction with the professional luthier I work with, in order to determine the schedule of restoration works required, whether it may include a neck reset or the need to re-level the fingerboard, on which if we cannot avoid losing the painted position markings, we do have stencils in order to replace them, or alternatives to install dot markers, etc. to retain the character of guitar as much as possible. Major jobs are carried out in the luthier's workshop, and the whole restoration completed under his supervision.

The original tuners & tailpieces do generally show some typical age-related discolouration but, in the main they work fine, amd are retained wherever possible, but if that is not practicable there are good options for repro parts or I do have a stock of original parts to call on. Original wooden floating bridges, wooden or very good original hard plastic nuts, are re-used whenever possible, but if not practicable replacements are individually purpose-made in Ebony or Bone.
Action, strings & cases
Following whatever restoration/repair works are required on the individual guitar, on completion of the set-up adjustments we will be looking for an action of around 3mm. at the 12th. fret, which I reckon that is ideal "all-rounder" for the Round-Neck models, good for Bottleneck play, but with fretting aided by the shorter scale length and consequent lower string tension, therefore ideal for a mixture of finger-style and bottleneck play. Within reason it can be a degree higher or lower to suit individual requirements.

Additionally these guitars could also be used for full-time slide with a nut riser costing no more than a few pounds. The sound is typically loud and pokey, just as a Stella should be - a great Bluesy voice! It has "That Sound" in spades - even, woody, bright, clear, ringing tone! They are usually strung with Martin Bronze Light or Martin Retro Monel Light gauge 12-54 strings, and really sound tremendous - and loud!

However, the Square-Neck guitars will be set-up for lap-slide playing, with appropriate tall nut & high strings, of suitably heavier gauge.

There is usually no case (although the guitar will be well packed and securely boxed for posting), but I do have the odd period case, and may be able to supply one of the type these guitars originally came in, or alternatively I may be able to supply it with a virtually unused Hiscox Liteflite hardshell case. These cases of course do offer much better protection, but in the case of small parlors, even the smallest case produced by Hiscox does require a some of their extra internal pads fitting, in order to hold the small guitar correctly. Square neck guitars without a dedicated case can be more problematic. I will be happy to advise whether I can marry the guitar to a suitable case, at the time of purchase, and if so agree with you an inclusive price for Guitar + Case.
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**** FEEDBACK ****


"Hi Bob - Guitar arrived safe and sound - unpacked - tuned ........and what I can I say is superb!! Perfect setup for Blues and Ragtime fingerpicking. Feels great -looks great- sounds great!!!......a beautiful restoration.Many thanks for a very fine job. Kind regards


Hi Bob, Hope you are very well.After many hours playing my latest acquisition I am very happy to report that my love for the Terz has not diminished in the slightest.The strings have mellowed and the shorter scale easily facilitates those tricky Blues and Ragtime stretches.My enjoyment is not confined to the sound and playability but I also like to just sit and look at the instrument as an aesthetically pleasing object.-the proportions and those aged and beautifully coloured woods.

I'm sure I'll have the pleasure of buying from you again.After I discovered your website a couple of years ago I knew I would eventually order something.Take care and keep well.Best regards.

.......AND AGAIN NEARLY 4 MONTHS LATER!............

"I really enjoy playing the Terz and guitar playing friends are fascinated by the great tone and volume from such a small body."

**** YOUTUBE ****

.....absolutely loads to go at here...I've embedded & linked a selection, but there are so many demos on YouTube to go at for these various guitars....should keep you occupied for a while!

I have to give pride of place to a demo by Jake Wildwood...a regular source of knowledge...and have embedded his demo entitled "1930s Oscar Schmidt-made Collegiate parlor guitar"...also link to Jake's blogspot on his guitar.....the link between the Oscar Schmidt Company & P'MICO Collegiate guitars is well known, but I don't believe they were all OS-made & need to do further research on mine.....

Then I have to pick up on another favorite USA guitarist & Guitar restorer, James Ralston & his Lyon & Healy for Useful Link #1.
Useful links
1920's Lyon & Healy Parlor Guitar. Restored. by James Ralston
Oahu Square Neck Slide Guitar by Brad
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