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Violin attributed to Louis L÷wenthal, Berlin, ca. 1890-1898

NMM 5643.  Front of violin attributed to Louis L÷wenthal [firm], Berlin, ca. 1890-1898 NMM 5643.  Treble side of violin attributed to Louis L÷wenthal [firm], Berlin, ca. 1890-1898 NMM 5643.  Back of violin attributed to Louis L÷wenthal [firm], Berlin, ca. 1890-1898

NMM 5643. Violin attributed to Louis L÷wenthal [firm], Berlin, ca. 1890-1898. Rubber-stamp in blue ink, seven locations on inside of back, three locations on inside of top, upper bouts: Paul Ohm / Jeweler / HOSKINS, NEBR. Pencil inscription on inside of back, upper bass side: Paul Ohm / Berlin. Germany. / [decorative scrolled line]. Pencil inscription on inside of back, below bass f-hole: 18 9 8. / Rep. Top: two-piece, quarter-cut spruce, fine grain. Back: two-piece, quarter-cut maple with narrow curl, descending from center joint. Ex coll.: Lester R. Brueckner. Gift of Ruby G. Brueckner, Ocean Park, Washington, 1993.

This violin was brought from Berlin to Hoskins, Nebraska, by Paul Ohm, the jeweler whose name is both stamped and written inside the instrument. About 1929, Ohm gave the instrument to Lester R. Brueckner (1916-1986), a thirteen-year-old whose mother had to take in laundry to earn money to pay for her son's violin lessons. The Brueckner family moved to California a few years later, in 1933, where Lester eventually gained employment as a welders' helper with the Southern Pacific Railroad. By the time of his retirment in 1976, Brueckner had advanced to the position of assistant supervisor of welding for a seven-state area. In 1980, the amateur violinist fulfilled a life-long dream--to build a violin--undoubtedly inspired by his Löwenthal instrument. Brueckner spent more than 684 hours building his first violin. Nine more were produced before his death at the age of 70. Symbolically repaying the favor bestowed upon him by Paul Ohm more than fifty years earlier, Brueckner and his family presented most of these handmade violins to serious young people just beginning their own musical training.


Soundholes of violin attributed to Louis Löwenthal

F-holes: large lower eyes; inside edges stained dark brown.


Front view of scroll on Lowenthal violin Side view of scroll on Lowenthal violin Back view of scroll on Lowenthal violin

Views of the scroll and later nickel-plated steel machine peg mechanism with decoratively-stamped, nickel-plated steel plates, black celluloid heads; geometric decoration stamped on plates.

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