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Description

Beautiful, crack-free instrument in exquisite condition. It was built just before Martin began using serial numbers. Inside penciled “J.J.K. Aug 31, 1897” marking the day the build started. It’s pressure-stamped “C.F. Martin, New York, New York” on the back of the head-stock and heat stamped on the inside center strip. The French polish finish is nearly 100% intact and all parts are original including, I believe, the bridge pins and end pin. The guitar is set up to play with silk and steel strings. It is, essentially, a museum piece that you can play and enjoy.

The “Style 21” is one of Martin’s longest standing models. The first were built before 1850 and continue to the present day. In 1897, the back and sides were Brazilian rosewood with simple b/w trim on the top. The two-piece book-match set is highly figured and has a colorful strip of marquetry. The top is Adirondack spruce. The rosette is full herringbone with two inlaid circles. Pyramid bridge with drop-is saddle of ebony. Ebony fret-board with no position markers and bar frets. The neck is one-piece mahogany with volute, ebony reinforcement and slotted headstock. The tuners are engraved “three-to-a-strip”. One button has possibly been replaced. Inside we find a modern x-bracing pattern with one scalloped tone bar. The braces are so light it’s a wonder the guitar hasn’t exploded (as so many have). The bridge plate is tiny and original.
Condition is remarkable. Some light playwear as you might expect. There a small area east of the fingerboard that is sealed with French polish. The bridge appears to have been off of there’s a very tiny little area of touchup on the north side under the strings. No distress. The fretboard has a small mark before the seventh fret and there are small shallow capo marks to high up the neck for anyone to notice. Remarkably, the frets look original. Probable neck reset long ago.

Currently set up with silk and steel, the guitar plays very easily and sounds very warm and full. The nut is a fulsome 1-7/8” and string spacing is 2-3/8” at the bridge. There’s plenty of finger-picking room even for the chubbiest fingers. I would probably be taking on some liability to suggest the new owner experiment with a low tension steel string. There are some brands out there with tension lower than the silk and steel. One of my customers has done extensive research which I’m glad to share. But there’s no pressing need.
The case. Hand tooled leather. Bottom loader. Some discoloration here and there but otherwise in excellent shape. Like the guitar, an incredible relic from two centuries ago that you can enjoy today.

CONSIGNMENT

Specs

Top: Adirondack Spruce
Band & Sides: Figured Brazilian Rosewood
Bridge & Fretboard: Ebony
Appointments: Herringbone rosette, rosewood trim top & bottom
Nut width: 1-7/8”
String spacing: 2-3/8”
Body width: 12-3/4”
Depth: 4-3/16”
Scale length: 24.9”
Case: Original hand tooled leather

1897
C. F. Martin
Excellent
Natural
Original Hard
23 Years
$7,950 down from $9,500
Jet City Guitars, LLC
Jim Brown
206-669-7099
Seattle, WA
3:19 AM
By Appointment.

Payment is by personal check or money order. Payment in full, including shipping and insurance, is required before shipment. Personal checks must clear your bank. Please specify preferred shipping method when you order the instrument and we will calculate the exact price for you.

We represent the instruments as accurately as we can. All instruments are shipped on 48-hour approval. If there is damage as a result of the shipping, please contact us immediately and we will deal with the insurance company. If the instrument is damaged in transit from you to me, then you are responsible for dealing with the damage and insurance. For refunds, all instruments must be returned in the same condition as we shipped them in.

All instruments are shipped on 48-hour approval. If there is damage as a result of the shipping, please contact us immediately and we will deal with the insurance company. If the instrument is damaged in transit from you to me, then you are responsible for dealing with the damage and insurance. For refunds, all instruments must be returned in the same condition as we shipped them in.