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Saxophones - Stencil names

All the saxophones made in America between 1910 and 1930 were made in one of seven factories: Buescher, Conn, Holton, Martin, Selmer, H.N. White, and York.  However, they were engraved (stenciled) with dozens of different names. 

Apparently, the top-of-the-line instruments would bear the name of the manufacturer (Conn, Buescher, Martin, etc.).  But when a music store (such as Carl Fischer, Lyon and Healy, or Sears Roebuck - or even the corner music store in a small city) placed a large order, they could negotiate a lower price, and get a slightly lower quality instrument with another name engraved (stenciled) on the bell.  

These "stencil instruments" did not have the fancier keywork, rolled tone holes, etc. that were found on the top-of-the-line instruments.  Perhaps they were made with the duller tools, or by the apprentices, or during the week that all the master craftsmen were on vacation!  But most of them are fine instruments, perfect for use by students learning the saxophone.  And they can be purchased (on Ebay, at tag sales, or at local music stores) for a fraction of the price of their brand-name counterparts.

A practiced eye can pick out keywork features that give away the factory that made the instrument.  If you have a stencil model saxophone and you'd like help figuring out what factory it came from, email me some clear, close-up pictures, and I'll see if I can help you figure it out!

Buescher instruments (made in Elkhart, Indiana) were stenciled:

American Artist
Bundy (Also see Selmer, Conn)
Carl Fischer
Harwood Professional
Lyon & Healy
Oliver Ditson
Selmer New York (see also Conn)
Selmer US (see also Conn)
Wurlitzer (see also Martin)

Conn instruments (made in Elkhart, Indiana) were stenciled with the following names:

Bundy (also see Selmer, Buescher)
Continental Colonial
Grand Opera
Kalashen's Kleartone / Klaritone
Liberty C. K. C.
Orpheum Super
Pan American
Perfacktone (see also Martin)
Sears & Roebuck
Selmer US (Also see Buescher)
Selmer New York (Also see Buescher)

Holton instruments (made in ________) were stenciled:

(no stencil names known for Holton)

King instruments (made in Cleveland, Ohio) were stenciled:

American Standard
H. N. White

Martin instruments (made in Elkhorn, Wisconsin) were stenciled:

Dick Stabile
Lyon & Healy
Perfacktone (see also Conn)
Supertone Professional
Wurlitzer (see also Buescher)

Selmer instruments (made in Elkhart, Indiana) were stenciled:

Bundy (also see Conn, Buescher)

York instruments (made in Grand Rapids, Michigan) were stenciled:

(no stencil names known for York)

if you have a saxophone stenciled with a name not found here, please email me.   Include some pictures of it if you can!


Malcolm Dickinson
Saxophone Teacher
Old Greenwich, CT