The Twelfth Fret ~ Since 1977 ~

❌SOLD❌ Bacon Day Silver Bell No.1 Tenor Banjo, 1932


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This lovely Bacon Day Silver Bell No. 1 tenor banjo dates to February of 1932 at Groton, Connecticut and has had its wooden dowel stick replaced with coordinator rods for better control of the action.

The Fred Bacon Banjo company began around 1906 in Forrest Dale Vermont and in addition to his own workshop contracted work to Fairbanks-Vega and Wm. Lange, among others. In 1920 they moved to Groton, Connecticut and in 1922 David L. Day joined Bacon after leaving Vega. His work was immediately recognised – the banjos became known as Bacon & Day, and the headstock carried a B-D logo for many models – but the company name remained at Fred Bacon. In 1938, a hurricane caused significant damage to the Groton shop and subsequently Bacon contracted with Gretsch for production. That didn’t last long; in 1940 Gretsch bought the Bacon company. Production of this brand ended around 1967.

The Bacon Day Silver Bell No. 1 was the entry point for Bacon’s professional grade, top of the line range. The No. 1 is simpler in terms of ornamentation but, as can be seen with this now 91 year old example, is solidly and well built. Construction includes a Maple for the rim, resonator and neck, with Ebony for the head plate and bound fingerboard. The headstock is the most ornate part of this banjo, with Mother of Pearl B-Dolgos, Silver Bell designation and floral elements. The fingerboard also has Mother of Pearl inlays. The tuners, bridge and head are new Five Star parts, and a new tailpiece has been added. Importantly, the original wooden dowel stick has been replaced with chromed steel coordinator rods allowing for good action adjustments. Fret wear is light to moderate.

Sold with its case.


Price: $1,200.00 CAD
  • Model: Silver Bell No. 1
  • Year: 1932
  • Finish Sunburst
  • Class: Vintage
  • Serial Number: 31658, dated to February 1932 at Groton, CT
  • Country of Origin: USA
  • Condition: Good
  • Date Posted: 06/03/2023

  • This instrument has been sold
  • Consignment Item

  • Including Hard case
  • Instrument Weight: 7.7lbs 3.5kg
  • Scale Length: 22in 558.8mm
  • Nut Width: 1.114in 28.31mm

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