Concertinas at the Horniman Museum

Margaret Birley

Contributions to the Concertina Library by Margaret Birley.

birly-intro A project to digitize the ledgers of the C. Wheatstone & Co. concertina factory at the Horniman Museum, London
by Margaret Birley
Introduction to the project to digitize the ledgers of the C. Wheatstone & Co. concertina factory at the Horniman Museum, and the goals of this project in the program of the Musical Instruments department of the Museum.
Posted 15 June 2005
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horniman-wheatstone-concertina-ledgers Wheatstone Concertina Ledgers on the Web
by the Horniman Museum
Historical business records from C. Wheatstone & Co. are held at the Library of the Horniman Museum in London. The earliest ledgers from the Wayne Archives contain company sales records from the late 1830s to the 1860s (though with some large gaps) along with production records from the 1860s to the 1890s and some early records of wages and other payments. Later ledgers from the Dickinson Archives contain production records from 1910 to 1974, again with some gaps. All known ledgers have been digitized (some 2,300 pages in total) and made available free on this website for private research.

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Posted 15 April 2003; Updated 15 June 2005
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gaskins-twelve-sided-wheatstone A Wheatstone Twelve-Sided 'Edeophone' Concertina with Pre-Maccann Chromatic Duet Fingering
by Neil Wayne, Margaret Birley, and Robert Gaskins
A duet concertina (serial no. 35074) with a unique fingering arrangement, made by Wheatstone in 1938, turns out to be a realization of a design from Wm. Wheatstone's patent of 1861. The instrument is twelve-sided, a Registered Design feature of Lachenal & Co., and it turns out to be one of at least sixteen twelve-sided instruments made by Wheatstone between 1934 and 1941. The instrument is now in the collection of the Horniman Museum, London. As published in The Free-Reed Journal 3 (2001): 3-17. This HTML version of the article adds a number of additional photographs and active links to many of the sources cited in the published article. Updated 15 August 2003: Footnote 11 updated to record that Randall C. Merris has located instrument serial #33301, another of the set of three twelve-sided 40-key Anglos.
Posted 15 November 2001; last updated 15 August 2003
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» read original article (without updates or additions) in pdf
concertina-man The Concertina Man
Presented by Peter Day,
Produced by Neil Koenig
BBC programme on the history and music of the concertina, focusing on its inventor Sir Charles Wheatstone as a somewhat belated recognition of his bicentenary in 2002. In addition to the presenter, Peter Day, the program features (in order of appearance) Bob Gaskins, Brian Bowers, Margaret Birley, Stephen Chambers, Frank James, Douglas Rogers, Sean Minnie, and Steve Dickinson. The program was produced by Neil Koenig. BBC World Service programme broadcast 07 September 2004.
Posted 22 November 2004
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horniman-site Horniman Museum
the Horniman Museum
The Horniman Museum in London is home to the largest collection of concertinas (more than 600 instruments) and much related archival research material. A photographic directory of concertinas in the collection is available on the site. The Wheatstone Concertina Ledgers at the Museum have been digitized and are online at a separate website.

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Posted 15 April 2003
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new horniman music galleries
(The Horniman Museum London)
New galleries to display
the musical instrument
collection, opened 2002