Edsel Martin dulcimer on eBay -questions

Rob N Lackey
Rob N Lackey
@rob-n-lackey
7 years ago
419 posts

Jan, I've seen that head, too, but it was on Edsel, not Fred.  Seems that Edsel based some of his carvings of hillbillies on folks he knew.  Now that they're all gone, we probably won't know who they are.  I will say on the dulcimer in question the Eagle looks good enough to be Edsel's (not sure about the glass eyes, tho') and the pegs look "right."

 

Jan Potts
Jan Potts
@jan-potts
7 years ago
411 posts

Hmm....I never thought about those being "Egyptian heads" (plus I'd been told the other story by a reliable source).  I could swear I've seen some with the hair parted down the middle and drawn into a knot at the nape of the neck.  Maybe that's something I dreamed....(a "nightmare", Patty would say!!! lol)




--
Jan Potts, Lexington, KY
Site Moderator

"Use what talents you possess; the woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best." Henry Van Dyke
Rob N Lackey
Rob N Lackey
@rob-n-lackey
7 years ago
419 posts

Jan....  I thought it said Gertrude Martin on the back of the head and that might have been the owner.  My assumption, incorrect it seems, was that it had an Edsel label in it.

No, Jan, Fred told me they're Egyptian heads since the Bible speaks of dulcimers in Eqypt.  As far as I know, and remember from seeing all the instruments in his shop, the heads were identical on Fred's.

 

Jan Potts
Jan Potts
@jan-potts
7 years ago
411 posts

This was the point I made in a note to the seller:  ...so if the dulcimer said Martin with no first name, how could one be sure which brother had made it?

The seller was claiming Edsel had made it, but when I asked why he thought that, he didn't give me a straight answer--and then blocked me from bidding on it. He was saying the carving on the instrument said G erwin Martin, Swannanoa, NC, but said "That's how Edsel signed many of his" and said he got this information "from the web".

What it actually said, however--and I told him this--was "Genuine Martin", not "G erwin Martin". I wasn't questioning that it was made by one of the brothers, I just wanted to know why he was convinced that Edsel had made it.

I really don't think think there's anything out there on the web to support a signature of G erwin Martin, as he is claiming. I think he knew he had a Martin dulcimer and it would sell for the most money if it were touted as being made by Edsel. The outcome is that someone got a fine example of a dulcimer made--maybe--by one of the Martin brothers of Swannanoa, NC....

 

Oh--and those heads Fred carved on his? My understanding is that they were likenesses of relatives and other women in the community that he personally knew.

 




--
Jan Potts, Lexington, KY
Site Moderator

"Use what talents you possess; the woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best." Henry Van Dyke
Rob N Lackey
Rob N Lackey
@rob-n-lackey
7 years ago
419 posts

No, Fred, died several years ago.  After I bought my 1st dulcimer from him, I'd stop at the shop when I was in the area and talk to him for a little while.  Nope, never seen nor heard of a "Genuine Martin."  I'd think they were the kind of folks who wanted their full name on them.

 

Jan Potts
Jan Potts
@jan-potts
7 years ago
411 posts

Rob, do you recall ever hearing that they were signed "Genuine Martin" without the name Edsel, Fred, or Wade? 

Is Fred still living?  This "Fred told me" comment sounded like a recent conversation....




--
Jan Potts, Lexington, KY
Site Moderator

"Use what talents you possess; the woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best." Henry Van Dyke

updated by @jan-potts: 08/20/15 03:43:09PM
Rob N Lackey
Rob N Lackey
@rob-n-lackey
7 years ago
419 posts

Jan, there were 3 Martin brothers, Fred, Edsel & Wade.  Fred made a lot of dulcimers all with a carved "Egyptian" head on the scroll.  Edsel carved all sorts of things on his.  Wade... well, not sure how many he made.  Fred told me, "not many."  

Patty from Virginia
Patty from Virginia
@patty-from-virginia
7 years ago
230 posts

Jan, it wasn't me. Something about scroll heads staring at me while I play bothers me, LOLLaugh

Jan Potts
Jan Potts
@jan-potts
7 years ago
411 posts

"Edsel Martin" dulcimer just sold on eBay today and I was interested in whether or not it was purchased by someone on this site and, if so, they might want to share photos, comments, etc. about this interesting dulcimer.  I think 3 of the Martin brothers made dulcimers and put interesting carvings on some of the peg heads.  The pegs were hand carved wood, as well.




--
Jan Potts, Lexington, KY
Site Moderator

"Use what talents you possess; the woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best." Henry Van Dyke

updated by @jan-potts: 08/20/15 01:01:27PM