1920s Stromberg Deluxe
Cuppophone Tone Ring
If this was a restored banjo with a clear head, you could see
something like this
Ebony fingerboard and overlays
Ornate engraved inlay Carved maple neck
Brass lacquered, not gold
Gold plated hooks, oxidized
Cast Brass tailpiece with logo
2 Stromberg ID plates
99 percent original banjo
As a rule, Chas A.Stromberg banjos have no serial numbers.
I have seen only 3 exceptions
In the 1990s I also owned Stromberg
Like this it was a very early example Stromberg 19 fret.
It is my opinion, that they started production and stamped 1000
on the Marimba,and this Deluxe as a starting number.
Like you would in a checking account, to look like you had
written some checks, starting at 1000 instead of 001.
It may be speculation and conjecture to some but I will believe
until I see another with 1000 on it, that I have owned both the
first Marimba, and now the first Deluxe ever made.
At over 11" it is the largest tenor that has ever been in my
The flange is width is exponentially decreased and has the
smallest sound ports of any flange seen by me, to date.
Tailpiece is cast brass, proprietary design.
My Grandfather was a very close friend of "Charlie" and his main
job was as a mold maker in a brass foundry, and may very well
have contracted the casting, but that is conjecture.
The begin a relationship at the Thompson-Odell factory in Boston
that lasted until Chas's death.
The inlay is some of the finest, if not the finest ever seen on
a Stromberg with MOP/Ebony fingerboards and overlays.
The back of resonator is the second I have owned, with Birdseye
and the back veneer.
Only a few Stromberg 19 and 22 fret necks are maple, most are
Rosewood, with Rosewood back plates and built by contract by WM
This to me, respresents using up the remainder of maple left
from dealing with Vega, on all of the early Stromberg's.
This is only an educated guess, it was a"Waste not want not"
world, and I saw this done again, when Stromberg transitioned to
guitars, they made some round body guitars using the last of the
banjo rosewood, I have one of them.
Its is the first I have owned, with a "Vega-esque" style side
wall of engraved celluloid
The Waverly Reverse Geared tuners and King Arm rest are normal
to the early Stromberg tenor and plectrum.
I have owned my share of these wonderful instruments that tie
closely into my family history, I feel blessed to have been a
part of it.
More to follow
Mention of my Grandfather
Frank and Great Uncle Victor on Pg 90.
Courtesy of Jim Speros
Dad is small boy, has a Slingerland open back
Grandfather to his left, facing.
Stromberg Deluxe Banjo
He borrowed money on it in the 60s and the
people that gave the loan ould not honor our request to pay it
back and get the banjo even at 10 times the payoff.
So we wait and hope it will end up on the market
and someone will write.
Dad, in his faux "Stromberg Dream".
That is an early example with Vega parts, a Marimba,and my old
Great Uncle Vic, on his Deluxe, 1960s.