© Frank Ford, 2003; Photos by FF
The time around the Civil War is often described as the "minstrel" period in American popular music. Decades before the first recordings and radio, the traveling minstrel show was a major force in the distribution of folk styles. Unlike written and published music, this music had to be transmitted in person.
Here's a fine example of a minstrel era banjo, complete with its own minstrel incised on its fingerboard!
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