Question I have a Martin alto saxophone serial number 65467. Under the word Martin there is a word in cursive that I can't seem to read. Under that is some capital letters. It say something FELT. It needs reconditioned; however, I don't know what that may cost and an approximate value of the instrument. We would like to donate it to a local elementary school in need but hoped to have more information when we talk to them. Any information you have would be appreciated.
Sincerely, Tonie L Scott
Answer Hello Tonie, You have a vintage Martin alto sax made in 1925. The local elementary school doesn't want this sax. They would have to pay hundreds to get it fixed up and playing. It is not a student model. This sax is a pro model from another time in history. The model of this sax is Martin Handcraft. That is the writing in cursive, and under that it says Elkhart Ind.(Indiana). Here is the history of the Martin company.
Originally "The Martin Band Instrument Company" was founded by John Henry Martin and his five sons. John Henry Martin was born February 24, 1835 in Dresden (Germany) under the name Johann Heinrich Martin. He learned to make instruments in Germany as an apprentice from 1850-54 by Christian Aug. Hammig of Markneukirchen (Germany), according to records in the Musikinstrumenten-Museum in that village.
In 1855 he emigrated to the USA and followed his trade, first in New York, later (in 1865) he moved to Chicago. The "The Martin Company" was founded by him in 1865 (other sources claim around 1890) in Chicago.
In 1871 the factory was destroyed by the great Chicago fire. The family was reunited three days after the fire when they met on the shores of Lake Michigan.
In 1876 the family moved to Elkhart where John Henry was an employee of the Conn Company when there were only six men at work there, but he also worked for other instrument manufacturers, one of which was The Michigan Musical Manufacturing Company of Detroit, Michigan. Because of ill health, he retired from making instruments in 1902.
The second company called "The Martin Band Instrument Company" was founded in 1904 by John Henry and his five sons, in a factory at 431-433 Baldwin Street in Elkhart, Indiana. Frederick Martin, was the Treasurer of the Company.
John Henry Martin died on Nov, 25, 1910.
In 1912 Francis Compton bought the Company from the Martins, but retained the name.
Henry Charles Martin , John Henry's oldest son, continued to work with The Martin Band Instrument Company until 1923 when he formed his own company, the Henry C. Martin Band Instrument Company. He died on November 8, 1927.
In 1928, Martin acquired controlling interest in The Indiana Band Instrument Company, which operated as a separate company until 1942, when it moved under the flag of Martin to become the producer of student line instruments, a strong growing market at that time. It is my belief that Indiana Band instruments produced all the Martin stencils.
In 1961, Paul Richards formed the Richards Music Corporation, by merging Martin, Blessing and Reynolds, (In this period Martins carry a the RMC marking, which officially stands for Round table of musical Craftsmen, NOT (officially) for Richards Music Corporation)
In 1963, Richards Music was dissolved
In 1964, Wurlitzer bought the rights of Martin. including registered trademarks, copyrights, patents, engineering records and tools.
In 1971 Leblanc (The french company that markets Vito and Yanagisawa, took over the rights, they used the Martin name to sell Yanagisawa build saxes.
To restore this sax could cost about 550- to 1000, once it's all restored it could be worth about Alto $ 800. Please check your sax to see if you have the Martin Alto "Typewriter" model it could be worth about $ 1600. The best thing to do is to sell on eBay, take that money and donate it to the schools. The schools needs newer Yamaha's, Vito's or Bundy's saxophones for their kids. This sax is way too old and valuable for a kid to drop. Please keep the kids far away. This sax is not a toy. Only a pro who knows how to deal with old vintage saxophones should own this horn.
I'm a Professional Jazz Saxophone soloist recently retired from 23 years with the USAF Band Of Flight, WPAFB, OHIO, experienced in performance, technique and equipment. I'm not a buyer/seller or dealer. I have 40 years Alto, Tenor, Soprano and Bari Saxophone performance experience with additional years on the Flute, Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, Bass Guitar, Piano, Drum-set, Guitar and Voice. I'm a third generation professional military musician, my father, Bill Koeller(1939-1997) was in the USAF 1958-1962, and played Jazz Hammond B-3 organ from 1957-1997, and my fathers Uncle, Alfred Koeller (1912-1993), was a professional Acoustic Bassist in the Army Air Corps in WWII, and also performed on Jazz Guitar, Hammond organ, Piano and tenor saxophone.
Professional Saxophone Soloist, 23 total years with the USAF Bands, 6 years with the USAF Band of Flight, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio, performing on Tenor, Alto, Soprano, Clarinet, and Flute. 4 years in Japan, at Yokota AFB with the USAF Band of the Pacific. An Avid Composer and Arranger for the Night Hawk Protocol Combo. Former Lead Alto Saxophonist with the USAF Night Flight Big Band performing the music of Glenn Miller as well as other hits of the Big Band Era. I collect LP records of Jazz, blue's, classical and rock, and have over 12,000 records.
Organizations USAF,Phi MU Alpha Sinfonia, Men's National Music Fraternity, Johnny Mack Super Big Band, Tom Daugherty Orchestra, Kim Kelly Orchestra, Dayton Jazz Orchestra, Eddie Love Big Band, Gem City Big Band, Jazz Central Big Band, Shin Sings Orchestra, Kim Kelly Orchestra,USAF Night Flight Jazz Ensemble, Different Hats Big Band, Jimmy Baker Blues Band, This Side Up, Freelance, KING KOELLER Quartet, Jazz Central Big Band, GB Work, Sax On The Web,
Publications Saxophone On the Web;
Anchorage Daily News;
Augustana College Public Radio, WVIK;
Education/Credentials North Texas State University School of Music, Jazz Studies 1982-1986
Lead Alto, Lab bands 1982-83 and small group leader 1983-1984,
Jazz Radio Host WVIK 90.1 FM NPR affiliate Rock Island, IL
United States Collegiate Wind Band European tour 1980
Augustana College, Rock Island IL, Liberal Arts Music
Mentors/Teachers:My father Bill Koeller, a Jazz Hammond B-3 Organist (1939-1997)
Great Uncle Alfred Koeller, Acoustic Bass 1912-1993
Awards and Honors Paul Shartle Musician of the Quarter Spring 2008;
Glenn Miller Festival, Clarinda, Iowa featured soloist;
McDonald's All-American Band and Jazz Ensemble 1979;
US Collegiate Wind Bands,Paul Lavalle Conductor, tour of Europe,1980;
John Phillip Sousa Award, 1980 Dimond HS Anchorage, Alaska;
USAF National Defense Service Medal with Bronze Star;
USAF Achievement Medal with 5 Oak Leaf Clusters;
USAF Good Conduct Medal with 6 Oak Leaf Clusters
Past/Present Clients Performed with, Bob Hope, The Platters, Four Tops, Jimmy Dorsey, Crystal Gail, Helen Ready, James Williams, Dallas Jazz Orchestra, Jack Jones, The Mills Brothers, the G-Clef's, Lionel Hampton at Carnegie Hall, Performed for the King Of Thailand 2005, Tom "Bone's" Malone, Roy Hargrove, Tommy Turrentine, Performed for President Gerald Ford, President George W. Bush, The Maguire Sisters, The USO Girls-Andrew Sisters Tribute, The Four Lads, Lincoln Berry, The Dayton Jazz Orchestra, Louis Bellson, Buddy DeFranco, Walter Bishop Jr, Sadao Watanabe, Bobby Shew, Pete Jolly, Quad City Jazz Ensemble, Augustana College Symphonic Band, Jack Scott, Catfish Jazz Society, Intrigue-Boston Wedding Band, The Mark Herbert Little Big Band, The Pacesetters Big Band, The Ambassadors Jazz Ensemble, Pacific Showcase Big Band, Jimmy Dorsey Big Band under the direction of Lee Castle, Ronny Scott Orchestra, Big Al's Hot Dance Orchestra, The Dayton Sidewinders, Tom Daugherty Orchestra, Johnny Mack Super Big Band, Ken Peplowski, Eddie Daniels, Buddy Guy, Roy Hargrove, Warren Parrish, John OMeara Jr., Dave Holcomb, Albia Silva,Vinnie Demartino, Clon VonFitz, The G Clef's