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MK Mauer, Larson vs. Martin (5) RE: Mauer, Larson vs. Martin 27 Sep 00

Thanks for the comments.

I know a little about the Larson Brothers. I know they were Swedish luthiers (Karl and August) who came to America in the latter part of the 19th century, and competed with CF Martin, and I think they set up shop in Chicago.

I have seen some examples of their guitars but never actually held one in my hands or played one. Martin seemed to have gotten away from flashy ornamentation after the 1850s and only did such on very special custom orders.

The Larson Brothers were more experimental and creative with some of their designs. Unlike Martin who until the late 1920s were still building guitars designed for gut strings with pyramid bridges, the Larson Brothers pre-empted Martin in being the first American luthiers to build a wide range of 12 fret guitars fully reinforced for use with steel strings. They built under their own name, the Maurer name, and others that Bigchuck mentioned.

I have visited Grossman's site many times and have discussed Prairie State guitars with Stefan privately and he owns several and considers them among the finest fingerpicking instruments ever made as he does early 1930s Martin OMs. He also likes Franklins. Anyway thanks for the comments. They're appreciated.

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