Friday, April 30, 2010

Drum Collection in Boston's Museum of Fine Arts

Last week I attended the opening reception for the new Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix, Arizona (more on that later). There I met another guest, Darcy Kuronen, Curator of Musical Instruments at Boston's Museum of Fine Arts ("MFA"). Among other things, we discussed MFA's 1834 H. Prentiss drum (photo below).

Today I searched MFA's website and found the below images of interest to this blog's readers.

Ellis Mirsky
Blogmaster@FieldDrums.com

Side drum about 1800, Belgium

Height 44 cm, diameter 45.5 cm (Height 17 5/16 in., diameter 17 15/16 in.) Brass
Classification: Musical instruments

Object is currently not on view

Brass barrel, two skin heads held by wooden loops laced with cord braces and tightened with leather tags. Two snares below.

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Leslie Lindsey Mason Collection, 1917
Accession number: 17.2020

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Bass drum and two mallets about 1810, England

Height 73.5 cm, diameter 65 cm (Height 28 15/16 in., diameter 25 9/16 in.) Wood

Classification: Musical instruments

Object is currently not on view

Wooden barrel, overlapped and riveted with three rows of flat- headed brass rivets. Painted white scroll, decorations, no inscriptions. Two painted wooden hoops held with cord braces and tightened with leather tags. One hoop braces with sheet iron patches (riveted on). Two drumsticks.

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Leslie Lindsey Mason Collection, 1917
Accession number: 17.2021a-c

Provenance/Ownership History: Ex. coll. Francis W. Galpin Ex. coll. Francis W. Galpin Ex. coll. Francis W. Galpin

This object is included in the following Selected Tour(s):
•Percussion Musical Instruments

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Bass drum about 1815, England

Height 80 cm, diameter 72 cm (Height 31 1/2 in., diameter 28 3/8 in.), Wood

Inscriptions: Painted on shell (on large red square): DARTMOUTH INDEPENDENT HARMONY BAND / (on a small scroll: Unity is strength)

Classification: Musical instruments

Object is currently not on view

Wooden barrel built up with two shells of equal height. Two wooden hoops, braced and tightened with cord and tags. Below inscription are white and blue ensigns with the flagstaffs crossed.

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Leslie Lindsey Mason Collection, 1917
Accession number: 17.2022

Provenance/Ownership History: Ex. coll. Francis W. Galpin

This object is included in the following Selected Tour(s):
•Percussion Musical Instruments

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The Drummer Boy about 1862
William Morris Hunt, American, 1824–1879

91.76 x 66.36 cm (36 1/8 x 26 1/8 in.)
Oil on canvas

Inscriptions: Lower right: WMHunt [WMH in monogram]

Classification: Paintings

Object is currently out on long-term loan

Following the election of anti-slavery president Abraham Lincoln, the southern states seceded and formed the Confederate States of America. When the war began, both sides believed it could be quickly won, and patriotic feeling surged. This image, painted early in the war, shows a barefooted boy beating the drum for volunteer soldiers.

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Gift of Mrs. Samuel H. Wolcott, 1966
Accession number: 66.1055

Provenance/Ownership History: The artist; to J.H. Wolcott, Boston, after 1862; Samuel H. Wolcott, his grandson, Boston, 1891; to Mrs. Samuel H. Wolcott, 1935; to MFA, 1966, gift of Mrs. Samuel H. Wolcott.

This object is included in the following Selected Tour(s):

•American Paintings
•MFA Images: American History

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Drummer Boy 1862–65
William Morris Hunt, American, 1824–1879

Sheet: 101.9 x 68.6 cm (40 1/8 x 27 in.)
Framed: 123.2 x 88.3 x 4.8 cm (48 1/2 x 34 3/4 x 1 7/8 in.)
Charcoal heightened with white chalk on gray-green paper

Inscriptions: L. r.: MH

Classification: Drawings

Object is currently not on view

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Ellen Kelleran Gardner Fund, 1967
Accession number: 67.789

Provenance/Ownership History: Vose Galleries, Boston, MA; purchased by MFA, September 13, 1967.

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Bass drum and mallet 1813–19
Frederick Lane, American, 1791–1865

Boston, Massachusetts, United States
Height 60 cm, diameter 62 cm (Height 23 5/8 in., diameter 24 7/16 in.), Ash

Classification: Musical instruments

On view in the: Musical Instruments Gallery

Ash (?) shell with painted decoration consisting of an American eagle with "E Pluribus Unum" on a fluttering banner over a shield. Skin heads held on by red-painted wood hoops laced with rope and leather tensioners. Includes old wooden mallet.

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Gift of the Family of Charles E. Black and Gale L. Perron, including Karen A. Black, Diane L. (Black) Conners, Emmie Perron Black and Katrina Perron-Black, 1986
Accession number: 1986.937a-b

Provenance/Ownership History: Donated by Charles E. Black of Hingham, Massachusetts. Black apparently inherited the instrument from his father, Clarence Edgar Black, originally from Waldoboro, Maine. It was supposedly handed down through several generations of the family, and is believed to have been used in the War of 1812 by Joseph Jewett (1780-1852) of Alna, Maine.

This object is included in the following Selected Tour(s):
•Percussion Musical Instruments

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Side drum probably 1834

Distributed by: Henry H. Prentiss, American, 1801–1860

[Blogmaster's Comment: I believe that the artwork is by Charles Hubbard based on other emblazonments on Prentiss drums of that era. See, e.g.
1. "More on the First Corps of Cadets and the 1834 Drum by H. Prentiss (Boston), Painting by Charles Hubbard,", this blog, Dec. 13, 2009;
2. "John Robbins' Bunker Hill Drum at Old State House, Boston ", this blog, March 20, 2009; and
3. "William H. Guthman's Incredible Drum Collection", Jan. 7, 2009.]

Boston, Massachusetts, United States
Height 35.5 cm, diameter 42 cm (Height 14 in., diameter 16 9/16 in.), Maple

Inscriptions: Extensive printed label (see photo):

Classification: Musical instruments

On view in the: Musical Instruments Gallery

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Gift of the Reed Family, 1993
Accession number: 1993.900

Provenance/Ownership History: Donated by Donald W. Reed of Bridgewater, Massachusetts. Reed inherited the instrument from William A. Reed of North Abington, Massachusetts.

This object is included in the following Selected Tour(s):
•Percussion Musical Instruments

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Henry Prentiss about 1830

[Blogmaster's Comment: Possibly the same H. Prentiss to whom the above drum is attributed?]

Attributed to: William Lewis, American, 1788–after 1838

6.98 x 5.46 cm (2 3/4 x 2 1/8 in.)
Watercolor on Ivory

Classification: Miniatures

Object is currently not on view

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Gift of Nellie Isabel Simpson, 1931
Accession number: 31.640

Provenance/Ownership History: The artist; Nellie Isabel Simpson; to MFA, 1931, gift of Nellie Isabel Simpson.

This object is included in the following Selected Tour(s):
•American Miniatures

B.E. & M. Brown Bass Drum -- Early 19th Century


eBay seller nimrod98 ( 653)describes item no. 220593839323 as:

Here is a really rare and original bass? drum, made by the Brown family of drum makers of Windsor, Ct. Most of these men served in the American Revolution, and this drum was made sometime after that. The original label is on chain laid paper, which would make it earlier than later. I have read that they numbered their drums later on, and this one seems to be unnumbered. I assume this one is fairly early on in production and probably before the War of 1812. It measures approximately 24" in diameter, and 21" tall. There are remnants of the heads on the drum, and it still has it's old rope and leather tensioners. It has it's original tack decoration, and also is painted on the front with gold stars. With new heads I'm sure it would still play well again.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Drumstick Belt Plate on Leather Sling with Buckle

eBay seller kangel2 ( 1375) sold item no. 120553967399 for $485.00 on 4/12/10 described as:

DRUMMER'S BUCKLE w/SLING AUTHENTIC CIVIL WAR
Authentic and gauranteed Civil War Drummer's belt plate and complete leather sling with iron rings, and S hook for the hanging of the drum and large brass buckle! We find no markings but this is a very rare piece indeed! This may not be the original drummers plate that was on this belt. It is an original CW buckle and same with the belt.

Late 1800's Miltary Snare Drum


eBay item no. 190379602417 offered by atomic-store ( 508) for $299.00 and described as:

This is a Late 1800's Miltary Snare Drum. We've had a few people look at this and this is what we have been told:

"Hi Mark, I would estimate that your drum was made just after the civil war era. These brass drums with painted rims and solid tension mechanisms are quite commonly found to be of the late 1870 - 1890 period." -Civil War Preservationist

Another gentleman who is a specialist on vintage drums thought that it was post-civil war due to the fact that there is brass hardware on the drum. He also noted that the snare used fibrous string instead of metal and the heads are calf hide. Please note, some of snares are broken, however they do look original. Also, one of the lugs is missing. All in all, a great collectors item!

U.S. Army Pattern 1883 Drum, Contract Marked

eBay item no. 150308215950 offered for sale at $425.00 by walterbudd-militarygoods ( 685) described as:

A regulation U.S. Army Pattern 1883 Drum in fine condition with interior label of Excelsior Drum Works, with hand written, “CONTRACT JULY 9th”. No year of the contract is written but pre-1886, as pattern and size of drum changed at that time. Excelsior Drum Works were gov’t contractors from 1879 to 1898, and are recorded in Bazelon’s contractor’s listings. Dem’s are 11” high, 16” diameter. Drum is untouched and complete with rope tighteners and leather tension tabs. Exterior label marked, “EAGLE”, indicating the military pattern. This pattern was adopted January 15, 1883. It did not contain a painted US/Shield, which was only adopted with the smaller drum of 1886. The snare head intact, however, the batter head partially split and has a 6” opening. This is an extremely scarce U.S. Army snare drum.

J.C. Haynes Drum with Great Label

eBay item no. 360251605577 sold 4/17/10 for $130.27 by chas-the-man ( 1070):
Vintage JC Haynes Rope Drum. All 20 metal clips are there. Needs attention, the hoop needs re-glue at the seam, see photo. Measure 16" across, and shell is 9" deep. Upon a closer inspection... there is what looks like penciled in on the inside of the shell some writing: JCH & Co. and some other writing I can't quite make out. It looks like a single ply shell, that has a seam. The edges are reinforced with a trim piece of wood. Sticker is intact.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

CW(?) Brass Drumstick Holder and Capped Sticks

Forget about bidding for this one because the giant CW item vacuum cleaner, j***0( 1127), has his/her wallet out and is dishing dollars galore to land this baby. Looking like it came out of the leather crafter's shop a few weeks ago, and freshly polished (and looking almost too good to be true), is this beautiful set of what appear to be brass capped drum sticks tucked into a (possibly field repaired) brass carrier mounted on a leather drum sling.

My suspicions are raised by the nearly new appearance -- like I said, almost too good to be true. And at least one reader (see comment below) agrees.

Nevertheless, at this writing, with 8 days left to go, the bid price is $1,099.00. That's really high, but possibly the right price. Let's see if there's anyone willing to challenge j***0( 1127) over the next week or so by upping the ante.

It is eBay item no. 350340614331 offered for sale by wwolst12 ( 23069), and described as "Antique Civil War *Rosewood Drumsticks* Leather Holder !RARE! All Original & Perfect Untouched Condition":

If you are a collector of 19th Century Drums, especially from the Civil War Period, then this auction is for you. Made from solid Rosewood, these 16 3/8” long Drumsticks have a 2 5/8” long by 7/8” diameter brass cap at the ends. These drumsticks fit in their original brass buckle which is attached to the original leather sling. The leather is also in perfect condition with a wonderful untouched surface. This sling measures 4 ½” at its widest point by 23” long to the solid brass ring at the bottom. There is only one problem with these very rare, Civil War Period Drumsticks, if you look closely at the drumstick holder on the right side of the buckle, you will see two very old pieces of wire which are holding it to the buckle. That’s it! There are no other problems or repairs and I guarantee 100%, plus shipping, that the high bidder will be totally satisfied with the Quality, Age & Condition of these mid-19th Century Rosewood Drumsticks, or I will return all of their money. … I am always interested in information that eBayers may want to volunteer. …

BUT SEE:



Source: http://www.instrumantiq.com/images/EA/EAM-BAU-Baudriers.jpg

Courtesy of: Drum and Fife who left the comment below.

1861 VMI Cadets Drum - Marked to Commemorate the Battle of New Market

1861 VMI Cadets Drum - Marked to Commemorate the Battle of New Market The Battle of New Market was fought on May 15, 1864, in Virginia d...