Antique Musical Instruments/Carl Fisher cornet


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I have a nickle plated Carl Fisher with CARL FISHER ARTIST NEW YORK engraved on the bell.  It has other fancy engraving/stamping and the serial number //682 on the bell.  I am sure the first two marks are // and not 11.  There are no marks identifying country or manufacture or origin.  The valves and tuning slides are in very good condition.  Is there a reliable way to trace this serial number or to authenticate the instrument as to age and value?

Sadly, no there is no way to authenticate the age of this horn by serial number.  Serial numbers were typically used by makers - and someitmes dealers - to manage the instrument through the manufacturing process.  The fact that for SOME makers, the serial number can also be used to date the instrument is a by-product, and many simply do not work chronologically.

Instruments that were imported after 1891 were supposed to be marked with the country of origin. Though sometimes it appears that this didn't always happen.

But assuming things happened as they were supposed to be done, then it is likely that this horn was made in the US, and by design, it would probably date to around the beginning of the 20th Century.  

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Kenton Scott


Please note: My area is BRASS instruments, not other wind, string or percussion instruments. I will provide information on antique, obscure and out of production BRASS instruments. 1) Please don't ask for evaluations, I'll not provide them on this site. 2) I am often asked very similar questions, so I'd invite you to first check on Much of the information I have garnered about this topic, I have posted on this WEB site.


I perform in several historical bands, have informally researched the area, repair brass instruments, and operate a Forum dedicated to the topic at

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