Item Type: Concertina
Full Description: C Wheatstone No 55561. A rare Wheatstone 53-Key "Bandoneon" of large hexagonal form, RH: 28 keys plus air-button, LH: 24 Keys. This model is one of two made in April 1953, for the export market - probably for US Chemnitzer players. It has inset & flat chrome plated metal ends and the scalloped Wheatstone & Co labels and Number mounts inset to the chromed ends, and large diameter nickel-capped wooden keys in an extended three-row "Anglo" layout. It has immense 18-Fold black leather bellows, The blued-steel reeds are in round-ended brass reed-frames with two smaller sized steel screws securing the tongues. The action board has been painted red, and a modified air-valve fitted. Only the Batch Number is stamped upon internal parts, with "119" on the sub-fret baffle mount, and under the metal frets.
Concertina Summary: C Wheatstone No 55561. A rare Wheatstone 53-Key "Bandoneon" of large hexagonal form. This model is one of two made in April 1953, probably for the export market. It has inset & flat chrome plated metal ends and the scalloped Wheatstone & Co labels and Number mounts. The blued-steel reeds are in round-ended brass reed-frames with two smaller sized steel screws securing the tongues. Only the Batch Number is stamped upon internal parts.
Owner or Collection: Concertina Museum, Belper
Maker: C Wheatstone
Maker Links: Concertina, Charles Wheatstone No 55561 http://www.concertina.com/wheatstone/index.htm
Wheatstone Ledgers Link: www.horniman.info/DKNSARC/SD04/PAGES/D4P0030S.HTM This instrument was one of two "Bandoneon" instruments made in on April 30th 1953, well after manufacturing was resumed after the Second World War. It appears in the Dickinson Series of Wheatstone Ledgers that list all instruments from Serial Number 25001, made in May 1910, right up to the closure of the Wheatstone section of Boosey & Hawkes' Edgware factory in January 1974. For details of these Ledgers, visit www.horniman.info/.
Region of Manufacture: London
Main Maker's Label Wording: The later style of scalloped black-on-metal "West Street" Wheatstone labelling (introduced from the 1930s), is pinned to recesses on the large chrome plated ends, "Manufacturers C. Wheatstone & Co, London". The LH end has a similar label, with the Serial Number stamped into a central un-painted rectangular area, with the labelling "Wheatstone" and "Made in England" above and below the number area.
Principal Serial Number: 55561. The LH end has the later 1930s-style scalloped black-on-metal "West Street" label, with the Serial Number stamped into a central un-painted rectangular area, with the labelling "C Wheatstone" and "Made in England" above and below the number area. Other parts only have the "Batch Number" of the instrument, in this case "60".
System Type: Wheatstone 53-Key "Bandoneon" with extended three-row Anglo layout.
Source Catalogue No: The Concertina Museum Collection Ref:C-085.
Wheatstone & Co. were founded in 1824, and survived until 1974. In 1975 the company was refounded by Steve Dickinson.
C. Wheatstone & Co was established in London, England by Charles Wheatstone (uncle to Sir Charles and William Dolman Wheatstone) at the beginning of the 19th Century. They moved to 20 Conduit Street, London, England in 1824. After the death of William in 1862, the firm was taken over by Edward Chidley, a distant relation. Edward Chidley died in 1899, and the firm was then controlled by his sons Edward and Percy. In 1905 the firm moved to 15 West Street.
After the death of the younger Edward Chidley in 1943, part of the firm was sold to Besson & Co., who were taken over by Boosey & Hawkes in 1948. In 1958 they moved to Duncan Terrace, Islington, North London. In 1961 the Duncan Terrace property was sold, and the remains of Wheatstone & Co. were moved to the Boosey & Hawkes factory in Edgware, Middlesex. The company ceased trading on the death of its last employee in 1974.
The remains of the company were purchased by Steve Dickinson in 1975.
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Created August 2009 by Neil Wayne
Last Modified 07 February 2012 by Neil Wayne, Chris Flint, Wes Williams
This page created Tuesday 14 February 2012.