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NMM 10637.  Over-the-shoulder cornet in E-flat distributed by John Howard Foote, New York, ca. 1890. 
Joe R. and Joella F. Utley Collection of Brass Instruments, 1999.

NMM 10637.  Over-the-shoulder cornet in E-flat distributed by John Howard Foote, New York, ca. 1890

This over-the-shoulder cornet matches an instrument depicted in an 1893 catalog from the shop of the musical instrument dealer, John Howard Foote, who did not actually make instruments for commercial distribution. He was the sole American agent for several French firms, including Antoine Courtois Mille; he also sold American-made instruments. In an 1882 letter to the Smithsonian (of which he was the founding patron of the musical instrument collection), he wrote: "most of my goods, though not of my manufacture, are made to order by different makers from drawings, descriptions and in some cases models furnished by me."

Foote's initials engraved on brass plaque

Engraved on oval brass plaque at bell: J. / H. [lyre] F. / & Co. / NY

Body:  German-silver body:  leadpipe, valve cluster, small vertical main tuning slide tilted 45°, bellpipe (bell and bell bow in one integral part). Overlapping tab seam extending over the entire length of the bellpipe (sloping tabs 2 mm wide and 2 mm apart). Garland with one engraved line close to the upper edge; Saxon rim with iron-wire insert. Ferrules with one engraved line adjacent to the edge. Bell to the left of the leadpipe.


Rotary Valves

Valve detail

Click on image above to see a larger image

Valve with V-shaped cork buffers stopping the reciprocal driver pivot;
first and third valves in off position, second valve in on position.

Valves:  Three top-action, string-operated, rotary valves. Coil-spring return mechanism; reciprocal driver pivot stopped by V-shaped cork-buffers. First and third valve with internal slide tubing, second valve without slide. Windway: first, second, third valve.


Accessories and Sounding Length

Accessories:  none

Sounding length:  923 mm; internal diameter, receiver: 10.5 mm; internal diameter, receiver minimum at ca. 31 mm): 10.1 mm; bore diameter (inner valve slides): 11 mm; bell diameter: 111 mm.

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