Who made this one?
Patent "Cantilever Neck" Banjo
© Frank Ford, 1999; Photos by FF
Here's another of those great patent instruments from the early days of the five string banjo.
This one achieves an adjustable neck angle with a unique wishbone
cantilever affair that adjusts by means of a screw through the shell at the heel,
and pivots amidships on the outside of the shell. The fifth string runs down through
the neck in a tube in much the same manner as the classic English "zither banjo."
The end of the scalloped "flush fret" fingerboard bears a patent date of 1891. I've seen this same imprint on Martin and other instruments which were modified in this patented style.
July 13, 2000 - I just got a message from Dion Morriss, who tells me this is a Hobart C. Middlebrook "Hoop Neck Rolling Fret Banjo." Thanks for the update, Dion!
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