Gavioli "Guitharmonie" Barrel Reed Organ
by Craig Smith (050128 MMDigest) & Hans van Oost (050129 MMDigest)

I'm working on a barrel reed organ for a friend and inside I found a paper label used for backing of a picture.  On it was printed "Guitharmonie".  It gave the standard Gavioli patent and address information.  Has anyone ever seen or had reference to this Gavioli instrument?

Craig Smith
Near Rochester, New York, USA
28 Jan 2005 20:20:46 -0500

guitharmonie1.jpg (31 kb)

The patent on the Gavioli "guitharmonie" is French pat. nr. 19120 of 16-7-1857.  Before I discovered the patent it was thought that it was a kind of mechanical guitar!

Two different constructions are patented: one looks like a guitar case, with a rounded lid over the barrel (I attached an engraving from a Gavioli catalog).  The other type is even more interesting: it has the crank on one side, and at there is a kind of guitar neck on the other side with a handle.  By pressing that handle it was possible to bring expression in the music by squeezing the magazine bellows.

I am curious to know which of these types is in Craig's hands now.

Cheers from the Netherlands (rain here, but snow in Italy!)
Hans van Oost
29 Jan 2005 16:27:12 +0100

1 February 2005