Item Type: Concertina
Full Description: A 26-Key early "Anglo-German" style of concertina by Henry Harley; one of three in the collection, with features copied from 1850s period German-made instruments. See also Items C.350 , and C.351 . This model is the simplest of the three, with the lower part of the fret-pattern three rows of simple holes, which are also present in the lower bout of the end-frames; the bellows gilding is a simple row of scrolling edge stamping all around the bellows-frame, and there are just two end-bolts per end. This model perhaps more closely resembles some of the German models upon which Harley may have based his design. It is a basic 2-row anglo system, of rectangular form, and with Numbered ebony keys, broad steel reed-tongues riveteted to a pair of brass German-style reed-plates in each end. Many oval "Harley" makers stamps within, larger ones on internal wood-work, smaller ones on the brass of the reed-plates. German-style ends, simple edging of gilt embossing to bellows-frame, with maker's label and original case .
Concertina Summary: A 26-Key early "Anglo-German" style of concertina, by Henry Harley, with features copied from 1850s period German-made instruments; it is a basic 2-row anglo system, of rectangular form.
Owner or Collection: Concertina Museum, Belper
Maker: Henry Harley, London.
Maker Links: A good survey by Wes Williams of Henry Harley's various addresses, and some comments on his instruments, is here. This Williams survey quotes the opinions of enthusiastic collector Stephen Chambers (2004) thus:
Region of Manufacture: London
Main Maker's Label Wording: Label on central RH fret cartouche "Improved Concertina Manufacturer, Henry Harley, 22 Brunswick Place, City Road, London".
Principal Serial Number: None of the Collection's Harley instruments have serial numbers or batch numbers.
System Type: Two-row anglo-german layout, with extra keys to the top row of each end, (which are numbered "0" to "5" and two further extra keys above each end of the top row, numbered "11" and "12". These last two keys act upon reeds located on a pair of "extra" nickel reed-frames located to each end of the large top reed-frame sheet. The RH has a Jones-style air-lever whose inset brass pin passes throught the frets and acts on a spring-loaded trapdoor-style air-flap on the inner face of the reed-plate area.
Source Catalogue No: The Concertina Museum Collection Ref:C-352.
Henry Harley, maker of distictive four-sided instruments, appears in directory listings from 1872 to 1888.
Henry Harley 'made' instruments that use the same construction techniques as German made instruments. The first listing for Harley appears in 1874 at 22 Brunswick Place, City Road, N. London and these listings continue at the same address until 1888. A Harley instrument has been indentified as being made by the German maker Bassler of Grünberg, Saxony. He seems to have modified German concertinas to give a more "English" appearance by cutting out areas of the ends and replacing them with fresh fretwork, and then ebonising them, with the woodscrews being replaced with endbolts. New leather bellows and extra notes were also added.
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Created August 2009 by Neil Wayne
Last Modified 07 February 2012 by Neil Wayne, Chris Flint, Wes Williams
This page created Tuesday 14 February 2012.