National ResoPhonic Guitars

National Reso-Phonic makes uniquely American instruments. The resophonic guitar was invented in 1925 by John Dopyera, at the urging of George Beauchamp. At the time, amplification hadn’t been invented but venues – especially silent movie theaters – were getting larger and louder, and instruments couldn’t keep up.

In response, Dopyera created an instrument based on a spun metal cone, that worked much the way a modern speaker does, and was much louder than traditional instruments. The initial models were tri-cones, and to produce them, Dopyera, his brothers, Beauchamp and other investors formed the National String Instrument Corporation.

Production began in 1927, and they were very successful but after a few years the Dopyera Brothers formed another company named after themselves – Dobro.  As it happens, in Slovakian, the Dopyera’s native language, Dobro also means “Good!“, and they used this in their slogan, “Dobro means good in any language!“.

The National String Instrument Corporation continued until 1932, when the Dopyera brothers regained control of it and merged National and Dobro.

In 1989, National Reso-Phonic Guitars was formed by Don Young and McGregor Gaines, to re-create the historic National instruments – guitars in round and squareneck models, six and twelve string, single and tri-cone, biscuit and spider bridges, acoustic and electric, plus resophonic mandolins and ukuleles.

The Twelfth Fret is proud to be the world’s largest National Reso-Phonic dealer, and we always have a wide range of models in stock, in single and triple cone models, in wood and metal bodies.

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