This is an early H.A. Weymann and Son made guitar dated c.1906. Labelled ‘Keystone State’ with their early gold decal shield shape that was discontinued about 1910. It has deep red Cuban mahogany back and sides, spruce top, mahogany neck and Brazilian rosewood fret board. It has a serial number of 6044. Weymann’s very early guitars did not have serial numbers, and they started adding them about 1900. Sometime around 1910 they also added style numbers.
This guitar is larger than the standard sized guitar of the era. This would have been called Grand Concert size. It has similar measurements to C.F. Martin and Co. 12 Fret size ‘O’ guitar.
MEASUREMENTS Martin O Size This Weymann
Total Length 37 3/4″ 38 1/4″
Body Length 19 1/8″ 19
Lower Bout 13 1/2″ 13 3/4″
Body Depth 4 1/16″ 4″
Scale 25 1/4″
This guitar, like all other Weymann guitars, is beautifully crafted. It is ladder braced, lightweight, and has had a neck reset and a re-fret. It has replacement Stew-Mac period tuners but I still have the original. It now has a fixed truss rod and a new handmade truncated pyramid ebony bridge in keeping with the original.
This is a key instrument for dating the serial numbers of all Weymann stringed instruments (see Weymann dating post). On the front of the headstock is a white label button with the words “O.F. Kauffman, Reading, Pa.” Under this in a very small font is “The Whitehead & Hoag Co. Newark, NJ. Pat. June 6, 1905.” This is the name of the maker of the label button. They were the first advertising button manufacturers making advertising buttons from the late 1800’s, including presidential buttons.
From The Music Trade Review (MTR) Oliver.F. Kauffman was a piano store owner in Reading Pa. and probably the retailer of this instrument. There are some references to him in the MTR, starting at 1900, but the one that stands out is that he was sadly one of thirty-six people killed in the Mystic Shriners’ train wreck California in May 1907.
Because there are no references to the Kauffman store after this 1907 date it looks like the store ceased trading after the death of Mr. Kauffman.
With the patent date of 1905 that certainly gives some weight that this guitar dated from 1905-1907.
(This is a H.A. Weymann and Son c.1906 ‘O’ Size Guitar played by Guitarist and Kirtan Artist PRALAD. He is singing the timeless ‘Hare Krishna’ mantra to the tune of “Here Comes The Sun”).