The Concertina Museum: C15.01-001

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Item Type: Wheatstone Symphonium No 78


Full Description: A Wheatstone Symphonium, serial number 78, with gold reeds, 17 keys, and fully engraved with Wheatstone’s 20 Conduit Street address. This early model is a 17-key version, with the two accidental keys each side having their reeds fitted to the inside edge of the wind-chamber. In later models, such as Item C15.1-002 with 24 keys, and the Horniman Museum Wayne Collection 44-key Symphonium, Museum No M17a-1996, their layout of keys introduces the ”English” fingering system, used on the first of the Wheatstone concertinas.
The 1829 Patent has images of an early form of bellows powered instrument, with reeds and levers from the Symphonium added to it.
There are around twelve to fifteen known examples of this early Wheatstone invention, (patented in 1829, but probably in production a few years earlier):
* two are listed here in the Concertina Museum Collection
* two are in the Horniman Museum Wayne Collection
(Symphonium, Serial number 188, Museum No M16-1996, and Symphonium, No serial number, Museum No M17a-1996) - see image here
* one is in The Smithsonian Institution Washington, USA
* two are in The Science Museum , London
* one is in the National Music Museum, South Dakota, USA,
* four are in the Chambers Collection, Co Clare.
* one is in the Museum of Fine arts, Boston, USA,
* one remains in the Minting Family collection

Source Catalogue No: The Concertina Museum: C15.01-001

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The Concertina Museum Collection

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.