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Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar

Greycap 14 Sep 01 - 07:49 PM
GUEST,Ned Ludd 15 Sep 01 - 05:12 PM
GUEST 16 Sep 01 - 04:04 AM
GUEST,Ned Ludd 16 Sep 01 - 12:10 PM
GUEST,greycap 16 Sep 01 - 02:03 PM
GUEST,Ned Ludd 17 Sep 01 - 01:00 PM
McGrath of Harlow 18 Sep 01 - 08:04 AM
Gary T 18 Sep 01 - 12:21 PM
McGrath of Harlow 18 Sep 01 - 12:56 PM
GUEST 18 Sep 01 - 01:10 PM
GUEST,Ned Ludd 18 Sep 01 - 01:54 PM
Big Mick 18 Sep 01 - 08:52 PM
McGrath of Harlow 19 Sep 01 - 01:23 PM
GUEST,Giles Meakin, Leicester UK 28 Apr 09 - 02:28 PM
Darowyn 29 Apr 09 - 03:38 AM
Darowyn 29 Apr 09 - 03:40 AM
nickp 29 Apr 09 - 04:13 AM
nickp 29 Apr 09 - 04:18 AM
Mr Happy 29 Apr 09 - 04:23 AM
nickp 29 Apr 09 - 10:26 AM
GUEST,Jonny Sunshine 29 Apr 09 - 12:11 PM
GUEST,nickp 29 Apr 09 - 02:08 PM
GUEST,nickp 29 Apr 09 - 02:09 PM
GUEST,nickp 29 Apr 09 - 02:10 PM
GUEST,Vic 28 Jul 09 - 02:36 PM
GUEST,Viccan 28 Jul 09 - 02:48 PM
GUEST,Viccan 28 Jul 09 - 02:51 PM
GUEST 05 Apr 10 - 04:36 PM
GUEST,Ray kingston 14 Apr 10 - 12:04 PM
GUEST,Guest Marc G 14 Apr 10 - 09:37 PM
GUEST,Lawrence Crame 04 Jun 10 - 10:24 AM
GUEST,Lawrence 18 Jul 10 - 06:00 PM
GUEST,Lawrence 18 Jul 10 - 06:07 PM
GUEST,Scottish Bill 14 Mar 11 - 06:20 PM
GUEST,mat 15 Apr 11 - 05:15 AM
GUEST,Gerry Roberts 31 Oct 11 - 07:26 AM
GUEST,pluto 13 Nov 11 - 01:04 PM
GUEST,COLIN RICHARD,S 07 Jan 12 - 01:34 PM
GUEST,Simon Farnell 28 Mar 12 - 02:04 PM
GUEST,Motolocouno 04 Dec 15 - 09:43 AM
GUEST,# 05 Dec 15 - 08:40 AM
maeve 05 Dec 15 - 10:34 AM
GUEST,# 05 Dec 15 - 11:12 AM
GUEST,Patrick G 10 Jul 16 - 04:18 PM
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Subject: Info needed on a 'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: Greycap
Date: 14 Sep 01 - 07:49 PM

A friend of mine has just shown me a gift from his father; a cello, sunburst guitar "The Michigan" dating from the '50s. Not a great guitar but competently made and finished. It's my guess that it may be one of the Gibson family, i.e. when an apprentice finshed his training he would build a guitar for the Sears or J C Penney catalogue range. Anyone out there help us with more info on this guitar?


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,Ned Ludd
Date: 15 Sep 01 - 05:12 PM

I think Michigan were a company. If they were a cataloge 'badge' then the quality was good. I used to own a Michigan 'National' type guitar,about the same date and the build was better than some nationals i've seen.


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST
Date: 16 Sep 01 - 04:04 AM

Thanks Ned, You're the first with any info at all.I'll wait and see if anyone else can contribute.The logo on the headstock says 'The Michigan'.Did yours?


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,Ned Ludd
Date: 16 Sep 01 - 12:10 PM

It was a small body two tone sunburst (yellow/black) slotted headtock,metal badge with 'the michigan' and a really gutsy tone. I bought it in Leeds from a friend who had picked it up on a U.S. trip.


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,greycap
Date: 16 Sep 01 - 02:03 PM

Ned, Maybe there's some significance - I'm only in Harrogate, myself


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,Ned Ludd
Date: 17 Sep 01 - 01:00 PM

Ah well, no one else seems to have heard of them. Can't be the same one It's a totally different type!


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 18 Sep 01 - 08:04 AM

I've a mandolin which sounds like it may be from the same source - it's got an oval metal plaque on the head saying The Michigan, and then in tiny letters B & SL Sole Agents. On the back it says Made in Germany.

Here is a link to a thread in which I was finding out about mending it.

I hope someone comes up with more information than I've been able to gather, because I'm curious.


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: Gary T
Date: 18 Sep 01 - 12:21 PM

It appears the link didn't make it into your post, McGrath.

Pardon my ingnorance, but what is a "cello guitar?" I've never seen the term before.


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 18 Sep 01 - 12:56 PM

You're right there, I must have missed some voital component - this should do it.

I was wondering that - I assumed Greycap meant a mandocello, but maybe with six course of strings insted of four.


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST
Date: 18 Sep 01 - 01:10 PM

Hi, Guys, The guitar is a smallish, raised-top with twin cello sound cutaways, rather than a single soundhole. The strings are secured by a metal tailpiece and it has a 'floating' bridge. The type of box usually used by jazzers and swingmen, I've always known them as cello guitars..... The current info is great and I'll pass it on to the owner, Roy. Thanks a lot,


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,Ned Ludd
Date: 18 Sep 01 - 01:54 PM

For Cello read archtop.The U.S. connection could be wrong,it's a few years since I aquired mine.A pal who is a Hawkwind fan says Dave Brock owned one?


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: Big Mick
Date: 18 Sep 01 - 08:52 PM

Someone here asked about a banjo with "The Michigan" on it. I asked Stan Werbin at Elderly and he had never heard of it. And that is real odd, cuz Stan is pretty well The Man on banjo's.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 19 Sep 01 - 01:23 PM

Well since the Mandolin I've got with the Michigan plaque is "made in Germany", maybe they never got over to the States.


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,Giles Meakin, Leicester UK
Date: 28 Apr 09 - 02:28 PM

I have a small Michigan acoustic, plain wood, black plastic label with "The Michigan B & SL Sole Agents etched on it, barely visible now the paint's worn off.
My father bought it second hand when he was at Loughbrough Uni during the 60s, I've had it since I was 18 and played it ever since.


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: Darowyn
Date: 29 Apr 09 - 03:38 AM

The description of the guitar- which I do remember hearing called Cello guitars in the early sixties- sounds typical of German built archtops.
Hofner is the best known,but Hopf, Hoyer and Hagstrom (not actually German and what was the "H" thing about?) all made them.
there are some useful links to European guitars and a lot of pictures for comparison here:-
Hofner Hounds Website
Cheers
Dave


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: Darowyn
Date: 29 Apr 09 - 03:40 AM

I should have mentioned that they were manufactured under many different labels, and both steel guitars and banjo family instruments were not unusual.
Cheers
Dave


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: nickp
Date: 29 Apr 09 - 04:13 AM

I have a Michigan Tenor guitar - again archtop and also with the black label with "The Michigan B & SL Sole Agents" However, although it's a while since I looked and also it is fairly worn, I'm sure the label has USA on it.


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: nickp
Date: 29 Apr 09 - 04:18 AM

I also remember seeing (on the web) someone in California selling a tenor banjo by Michigan. I wonder if it was a range name used by B & S L for instruments sourced from various companies, a bit like Hobgoblin's 'house brand' is Ashbury.

I'll check the label on my tenor tonight. Maybe I can get a photo or two.

Oh, and I'm in the UK too.

Nick


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: Mr Happy
Date: 29 Apr 09 - 04:23 AM

Is it bowed?


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: nickp
Date: 29 Apr 09 - 10:26 AM

No just slightly curved... hee hee!


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,Jonny Sunshine
Date: 29 Apr 09 - 12:11 PM

I also have a small Michigan guitar, (hello Giles, hope you got my email, I see you found this thread!), it's a flat-top with a floating bridge a small plaque on the headstock says "B & SL Sole Agents". My dad bought it second-hand many, many years ago, I learnt on it, borrowed it about 10 years ago and he hasn't asked for it back yet!

I've seen a Michigan resonator guitar, almost exactly identical, except for being a resonator guitar, and a Michigan mandolin, all with the same headstock, unfortunately looking fairly unplayable, on the wall of a pub in Slough.

Apparently Michigan was a brand name used by a British importer for instruments made in East Germany in the late 50s/ early 60s.

Mine has seen some action (and been repaired for some very nasty cracks in the body), but sounds like nothing else, it really chucks out a lot of noise, great in sessions. I've used it for a couple of acoustic gigs, but it needs a bit of work on the frets to get it up to scratch.


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,nickp
Date: 29 Apr 09 - 02:08 PM

View of the above mentioned tenor. look like they also imported from the USA as well. You can just make it out.

headstock label


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,nickp
Date: 29 Apr 09 - 02:09 PM

WHy wouldn't it let me give 3 links ?


inside label

tenor view


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,nickp
Date: 29 Apr 09 - 02:10 PM

wierd. But there they all are - and you can ignore the testing one


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,Vic
Date: 28 Jul 09 - 02:36 PM

I am in Canada now but have a Michigan from my Grandfather from Hull. It is in great condition and is made in USA. My mother tells me he had it in the 40s. I have been told that it could have been an early metal string from the Gibson Factory...


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,Viccan
Date: 28 Jul 09 - 02:48 PM

Here is the links

The top


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,Viccan
Date: 28 Jul 09 - 02:51 PM

Two more pictures

The back

The Front


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST
Date: 05 Apr 10 - 04:36 PM

hi , just to let you know ,i too have a small parlour guitar ,12 fret to body ,archtop cello style two tone burst ,floating bridge and it clearly states made in usa on the label as well as " the michigan , b&sl sole agents . mark in lincoln uk


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,Ray kingston
Date: 14 Apr 10 - 12:04 PM

i have one of these guitars :)
just wondering if anyone knows a way of getting parts for it ??
i need the floating bridge the tail piece and the pick guard .


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,Guest Marc G
Date: 14 Apr 10 - 09:37 PM

This name plate also appears on a tenor banjo, without "Made in USA" on it. Hardware is not similar to any American made banjo I have seen. See current posting on Elderly Instruments website (instrument "no longer available").


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,Lawrence Crame
Date: 04 Jun 10 - 10:24 AM

hi, i also have one of these guitars. mine is the archtop andhas been in our family for over 50 years. mine looks very similiar to the ones that have been posted above however not quite as fancy. mine has the Michigan logo on the headstock but does not have made in usa stamped underneath it.

however mine has a small sticker on the inside of the body under one of the F-holes saying BandS est 1865 England Canada London Toronto and there is a little cat playing a violin.

any ideas?


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,Lawrence
Date: 18 Jul 10 - 06:00 PM

I have a Michigan jazz guitar...interested to know where it was made and was it imported from USA. This is the 1st time I ever read about them.

Had mine since about 1987. Paid £15 from an advert in Liverpool.
I live in Liverpool.
Thought it may have come over on a ship in the 50`s maybe.Its got a nice ring to it. I often look at early Cliff Richard pictures of him with a similar looking guitar..maybe it is a Michigan also.It has a cream scratch plate, floaating bridge and the metal badge with B&SL sole importers on it.
Collectors item..? Someone told me they were a catalogue guitar.


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,Lawrence
Date: 18 Jul 10 - 06:07 PM

Just seen a great restoration sequence for the Michigan..
Check out Luthier website of grahamparkerluthier.com. Good stuff !


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,Scottish Bill
Date: 14 Mar 11 - 06:20 PM

Hi Guys, I have just found this website and have been looking at the conversations about Michigan Guitars. I have had mine since the early 60s (it was secondhand when I got it) , unlike the ones described it is has a slightly raised front but with a round hole, Spanmish style. In common with the ones discussed it has a plaque on the head board saying that it is called 'The Michigan' , B & S L Soles agents and 'made in America'.

It is not too clear from the discussions but where/who do you think made it? Any connection with early Les Paul...Michigan?

It has great sound, good action and I'm sorry to say I have strung it with low gauge steel strings...!

Can anybody fill in the knowledge gaps, I would be greatful for anything.


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,mat
Date: 15 Apr 11 - 05:15 AM

hi folks i have a resonator guitar with the michigan B&SL Sole agents made in usa on the headstock when i bought it i was told it was made in the 40s i bought it off Gerry Hogan if you need to know any thing it might be worth dropping him a line at Hogans music store in Newbury hope this helps


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,Gerry Roberts
Date: 31 Oct 11 - 07:26 AM

I have a guitar with "The Michigan, B & SL Sole Agents" in an oval on the headstock. It has palm trees sprayed in dark brown on the belly. It was bought for £11 from Heinz Music Shop in Hereford in 1964. Brass frets, zero fret, fixed bridge with brass saddle and slotted pegboard with side tuners. More or less parlour sized. Still have it. Was an excellent first guitar!


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,pluto
Date: 13 Nov 11 - 01:04 PM

I bought a Michigan resonator in the 70's,had it for a number of years.The model I had had the oval with B&SL Sole Agents on the headstock,and was made in the U.S.I was lead to believe it dated from 1937.I have since come across another slightly earlier model. As I understand it,Peter Green used a Michigan resonator on the recording of 'Oh Well'


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,COLIN RICHARD,S
Date: 07 Jan 12 - 01:34 PM

My first guitar in 1957 was a 2nd hand Michigan guitar a round hole parlour type with a bolt through the heel of the neck so i suspect that these guitars were built by Egmonde in   Holland as they made a larger model for ROSETTI in the early 60,s called WESTERN with a bolt   through the heel of the neck????????????


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,Simon Farnell
Date: 28 Mar 12 - 02:04 PM

I have a michigan guitar in need of restoration. the badge on the headstock reads The Micigan, Made in USA. It was my mothers and I believe it must be 40's or 50's. I understood from previous enquiries it was a catalogue model possibly made by Gibson as a budget line. If you would like to see photo's I will place some on the 'Earth Connection' facebook page later.


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,Motolocouno
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 09:43 AM

I have a michigan guitar ,round hole in belly,painted in gold and black an english rose with leaves each side,a small pattern around the hole ,with origina case ,my father bought it back from canada around 1932 for his brother,iin the case box ,is the finger bar used to play hawian with the music book


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,#
Date: 05 Dec 15 - 08:40 AM

What is a 'cello guitar'?


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: maeve
Date: 05 Dec 15 - 10:34 AM

I believe it's a nickname for a guitar with sound holes shaped like those in cellos.


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,#
Date: 05 Dec 15 - 11:12 AM

Thanks, Maeve.


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Subject: RE: Assist-'Michigan' Cello Guitar
From: GUEST,Patrick G
Date: 10 Jul 16 - 04:18 PM

I have recently acquired a 'The Michigan' archtop guitar with the 'Beare & Son London & Toronto' label and a Made in USA sticker on headstock. F holes with separate 'apostrophe' hole like Harmony's, tortoise shell plastic scratchplate with straight outer edge, open ended trapeze, ebony fretboard, floating bridge, conventional head i.e not slotted, solid spruce top, solid maple back, 0825 stamped inside lower f hole, original case. One previous owner and confirmed to have been bought for him when a boy in early 1930's. Came with a tutor book in case, published in 1930, so guitar was almost certainly sold from Beare's London store 1933 or 1934. In virtually unused condition. My guess is that it may have been built by Harmony for Beare for sale under their 'The Michigan' brand. Any comments?


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