Re: old liberty guitar

Posted by glenn manser on Sat, 06/02/07 - 14:26:15.

: : hi i have an old liberty slide guitar. looks like it from the '20s.
: : its all wooden and in real nice cond. what sort of value could i
: : put on the guitar , as i m not sure for insurance purposes

: : thanx steve
Hi...Glenn from Australia. No idea wot it's worth, but I have an old Liberty V-neck guitar made from "selected seasoned maple and constructed to be played in the Hawaiian method" (according to the inside label!) It also says "American Standard" in gold leaf in the top of the headstock, with an "H" (Harmony?) or "K" (Kay?)in red, and some verrryyy groovy gold leaf flower and vine motifs on the bottom of the face. Is parlour guitar shaped and I can get bgger-all info about it, apart from "that's brilliant, and can I have it when you die?" from my friends. Any further info would be greatly appreciated!!!!!

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The Liberty Guitar

Hi there, I too am in Vic and have one of The Liberty Guitar. It is a beautiful piece with a 'wagon train' design on it. Needs some restoration, but like you guys, I have had little luck finding a trustworthy 'expert' to get further info. I too have only been able to trace it back to the catalog purchases back in the day and where it was made etc. If there is any further info out there that you have found, I would love to hear about it. The guitar belonged to my grandfather who loved playing the Hawaiian style. It is in a hard case and still has some music sheets and books with it.
I hope someone is still following these posts that can help out.

Old Liberty guitar

Missed you by two years but if you're still around Glenn, shoot me an email and I'll send you a couple of pics!

Cheers, Damo

Liberty Tenor Guitar

What a blast to find this correspondence. I have an American Standard Libery tenor ( 4 string ) guitar. Belonged to my father until his passing and I think he bought it new in the 1930's from a catalogue. It spent all its days in Perth (WA) where it was regularly played around the Sunday keg, BBQs, Rotto and the gatherings of friends. Why he didnt buy a 6 string in the first place I dont know, but he was an accomplished ukelele player, so that (along with cost/availability?) might explain it. As fate would have it, he managed to remove an index finger as a young man, so he and the four string guitar turned out to be a good pairing.

Enough of the history though. The correspondence on this site does not say whether the guitars mentioned are 4 or 6 stringed, so I don't know if I am comparing apples and apples. There are however features similar to those described above. The guitar has "American Standard" above "Made in the USA" (in smaller type) embossed on a rectangular gold leaf on the headstock. There are three red stars on either side of the rectangle, and the letter "H" in a small white backed diamond also on the top side of the rectangle. On a paper label set inside the body is the following.

"The Liberty Tenor Guitar.
This instrument is warranted to be made of the finest selected and seasoned materials, and of the best possible workmanship. It is constructed to permit of being played in the same manner as the Tenor Banjo."

There is vine leaf motif on this bordering of this paper label

The guitar is still in good playing condition and, bar the bridge, appears to be in original condition. The old straight bridge is replaced by one with the setback B string ( which I suspect by father made) so that it does hold its tune up the neck. I am interested in the source of the guitar and what ever else I can find out about it, and wonder who else might own such an instrument, especially near to where I live in SE Qld. My email address is





Re: old liberty guitar

For anyone who stumbles on this thread.

They were made in Chicago by Harmony.

There were a few designs which are the second group of numbers stamped inside the guitar on the back near the neck block.

I've just been given one of these to restore.

Re: old liberty guitar

Hi there, I have one of these as well. It doesn't have any 'gold' leaf on the headstock (or any other motifs, it's very plain) but it does have the same inscription on the inside label. My grandfather bought two of these in the late 20s or early 30s and my father suspects they came from a Sears-Roebuck catalogue and arrived from Chicago. I once saw one in the Music Swap Shop in Carlton for $600.

I took the inside label seriously and played lap-slide with it for many years. It has a fantastic, honky sound, no doubt due to the 'selected seasoned materials' with which it is constructed (if they had plywood in the 20s then I reckon that's what it is!).

I'll send you some photos if you like.

Cheers, Damian

Re: old liberty guitar

Hi mate...I hope I can still find you at this post.Weird how you come across old postings and all that. I see you're from Carlton; is that Carlton vic? Who'd have thought one would be so close to home (I'm in Adelaide!). I'd love to see some photos and would like to send some back; let's compare Libertys!! my email is Look forward to seeing the beast.I use mine for parlour-style fingerpicking and it has tight but smooth projection that only an 80 y.o. guitar can have. Hope to hear from you! Cheers, Glenn
: I'll send you some photos if you like.

: Cheers, Damian

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