Zorba, Male Belly Dancer


Henna Design 1911 Conn Mellophone #118341 Henna Design


Olds Mellophone
Composite creation from Zorba's photos courtesy Horn-U-Copia.

"Centuries" before I was known as "Zorba", I played French Horn for about 25 years. I first learned how to play Mellophone starting in 5th grade, then after about a year or so with that, then I graduated to the French Horn. For some unexplainable reason, I recently got a hankering to pick up a Mellophone again. I actually contacted my old school district to see if they perchance still had the Mellophone I played ca 1971 and if they did, were they still using it? And if they weren't, would they sell it to me? I had always remembered it being an Olds instrument, #196767 - a number that is pretty easy to remember. I never remembered the serial numbers of any of the French Horns I played and owned, but never forgot that Mellophone! Unfortunately, despite an extensive search, the current band leader couldn't locate that instrument, or indeed any Mellophones at all. So that was out...

So when I saw this one on eBay for a good price, I bought it. The seller was semi-local to me, so we were able to arrange to meet in person so that this caseless instrument wouldn't be exposed to the hazards of shipping via "Fed-Up", "Universal Package Smashers", or "United States Package Smashers"! Being as the instrument didn't have a case, that was a good thing!

I've always been an Olds or a Holton man, I never warmed as much to the Conn French Horn I played for a bit in High School before getting my own horn - so it was a mental adjustment to acquire a Conn instrument! According to online serial number lists, it was made sometime in 1909, 1910, or 1911. The list that has its serial number, #118341 listed as 1910 claims multiple corrections were made to their list. However, the Conn factory burned down in mid 1910, and was rebuilt and restarted production late that year. Several new models of their various instruments were apparently introduced in 1911; thus my current thinking is that it had to have been made in 1911; 1910 or 1909 were pre-fire - research is ongoing. See "Discussion", below.

Olds Mellophone
Zorba, next to his late mother, first day with Olds Mellophone
#196767. I didn't even know how to hold the thing yet!

Olds Mellophone
It was very similar to this one, albeit with lacquered brass.

Conn Mellophone
eBay pic: The instrument I acquired, Conn #118341

Conn Mellophone
eBay pic.

Conn Mellophone
eBay pic.

Conn Mellophone
eBay pic.

Conn Mellophone
eBay pic.

Conn Mellophone
eBay pic.

Conn Mellophone
eBay pic.

Conn Mellophone
eBay pic, showing the "F" leadpipe installed.

Conn Mellophone
eBay pic, top to bottom: C,D, and Eb leadpipes. See text.

Conn Mellophone
eBay pic.

Conn Mellophone
Messing around with it when I got it home. Seller threw in a Cornet mouthpiece.

Conn Mellophone
As I recall, French Horns won't stand on their bells like this.

Conn Mellophone
Key of C leadpipe installed, see text.

Conn Mellophone
Key of D leadpipe installed.

Conn Mellophone
Key of Eb leadpipe installed.

Conn Mellophone
Key of F leadpipe installed.

Conn Mellophone
Entire instrument is heavily tarnished. It may stay that way...

Conn Mellophone
It even has the lyre screw, which usually disappears on old horns. No lyre though.

Conn Mellophone
Bach 7C Cornet mouthpiece. Well regarded for Cornets, not so hot for this instrument.

Conn Mellophone
"F" leadpipe is bent. Got it fixed. See text.

Conn Mellophone
Inspecting a valve.

Conn Mellophone
Possibly original cork bumper pad?

Conn Mellophone
Where it came from.

Conn Mellophone
And the other end.

Conn Mellophone
Mouthpiece won't fit without one of the leadpipes installed.
Goddess knows what the key might be without, perhaps a flat F#?

Conn Mellophone
Eb leadpipe has been repaired, rather poorly.

Conn Mellophone
"The bigger the glob, the better the job!"

Conn Mellophone
The F leadpipe showing the bend...

Conn Mellophone
The bell has seen damage over the years, but someone repaired it quite well.

Conn Mellophone
Time to clean the thing!

Conn Mellophone
Soaked in dish detergent and baking soda mix before starting to clean...

Conn Mellophone
Corks and felts from the valves.

Conn Mellophone
Brushing out a leadpipe.

Conn Mellophone
All done.

Conn Mellophone
Drying out before re-assembly.

Conn Mellophone
Tuning lines on the valve slides. All the way in for F according to period literature, first
line for Eb, next for D and furthest out for C. Almost unplayable in C without doing this.

Conn Mellophone
The valve pistons are actually serialized to the instrument, kind of like gun parts from the same
period. Each also bears its valve number, although its normally hidden under the cork bumpers.

So I cleaned it up and its in pretty darn good shape overall. No broken solder joints, bell dents have been ironed out, the valves are in decent shape - albeit with their plating worn away, etc. The Eb leadpipe was poorly repaired at some point, and there's that dent/crease/bend in the F leadpipe which I had fixed (see below).

These horns were reportedly originally supplied with 2 mouthpieces, one for F/Eb, the other for D and C - or so I assume. As the only mouthpiece I have for the horn as I write this (another is on the way!) is a Cornet mouthpiece, the results are sub-optimal. With this mouthpiece and the F leadpipe, notes start to deteriorate below treble clef first line "E" (written), and pretty much drop off entirely below middle C - that isn't right. So I'll see what the Hell after I get a (hopefully) better matched mouthpiece.

As for the silver tarnish, I'm leaving it be for now, and possibly permanently. There is no lacquer on the instrument, and if I polish the silver plating, it will just tarnish again, plus if I use silver polish on it, it will remove actual silver. A chemical dip supposedly can reconstitute the tarnish back into silver, but doing an object this large is problematic and I had less than steller results on a silver plated spoon I tried it with. We'll see, it actually looks kind of cool the way it is!

Conn Mellophone
Very pretty, but very wrong mouthpiece (L) purchased on Amazon...

Conn Mellophone
The Cornet mouthpiece (R) actually fits inside the shank of this thing - so back it goes!

Conn Mellophone
Try #2 to buy a real Mellophone mouthpiece. Slightly smaller shank won't allow the Cornet
mouthpiece (R) to go inside like the above, but otherwise very similar! Back to eBay it goes!

Conn Mellophone
A quick visit to the local brass shop got the F leadpipe ironed out.

Conn Mellophone
The tech also added the green felt washers to correct valve placement.

Conn Mellophone
Try #3 to buy a real Mellophone mouthpiece. Third time's the charm! Same size overall
as well as shank as the Cornet mouthpiece (R). Vincent Bach #6 Mellophone mouthpiece.

Conn Mellophone
Larger diameter and much deeper cup than the Cornet version. Somewhat better low
range, FAR better intonation, and perhaps not quite as good a high range. See text.

Conn Mellophone
Installed in the "C" leadpipe.

I played pretty much nothing but Vincent Bach mouthpieces in my French Horn days, so it was only natural that I'd turn to them for a Mellophone mouthpiece as well. I chose a #6, which is described as being the same as their well regarded #5, but slightly smaller. Intonation in the Mellophone's normal range is far better than with the Cornet mouthpiece, which only makes sense. It should be as the mouthpiece cost literally 50% of what I paid for the horn! Low range now starts at A below the staff (written) and extends to top line F easily enough, with above staff G doable, and even A above the staff with some effort. This model Mellophone reportedly was shipped with two mouthpieces from the factory. From Conn's "Musical Truth" of 1900: Each New Wonder Mello-Phone (sic) will be accompanied with two mouthpieces. One for French Horn substitute and one for Ballad and Alto playing. Both mouthpieces will have the same size face or rim. The difference being only in the depth of bowl and diameter of the throat. Elsewhere, Conn claimed key of F and D were for French Horn orchestral work, Eb for band work, and C for home (with piano) or church settings. I'd think the mouthpieces would divide better with one for F/Eb, the other D and C - but what do I know?

If I can locate the French Horn mouthpieces I think I still have, I'll get an adaptor and see if this horn can climb into the higher register a bit more - but A below the staff to A above is about the most I can get out of it at this time with my 25 year rusty chops, with the F leadpipe at least. Besides, its a Mellophone, not a French Horn; it isn't going to have the range of the latter.


A video I made about the thing - including some horrid playing!


An update/correction video with a demonstration of each leadpipe.

Conn Mellophone
Found online: A slightly newer example #127369 circa 1912, showing
the two mouthpieces these horns came with, the two main tuning slides
(one for High Pitch, one for Low Pitch), as well as the case. This one
has been polished, and the Eb leadpipe is in much better condition.

Conn Mellophone
A ding discovered in the bell...

Conn Mellophone
Nasty looking, but...

Conn Mellophone
...easy to deal with with these repurposed tools!

Conn Mellophone
Fixed. The metal looks different as it was somewhat polished in the
process of the repair, but you can't even feel where the ding used to be!


Conn Mellophone
Polished it after all, beautiful engraving on bell.

Conn Mellophone
Bottomside.

Conn Mellophone
Topside.

Conn Mellophone
Closeup.

Conn Mellophone
Bell interior.

I just couldn't stand it - bought some silver polish supposedly for old silver plated instruments like this, and went to town with a polishing rag. It came out looking far better than I expected - looks brand new at "stage distances". It does tend to show fingerprints now. We'll see how long it stays looking good - took about 3 hours...

Conn Mellophone
Existing valve spring, right with attempted replacement, left.

Conn Mellophone
Combined into one!

Not happy with the valve spring tension, what was in the horn when I got it was too weak, the tech tightened them up by stretching them which was somewhat better. Tried to find some new ones. What I ended up with seemed to be a better match diameter-wise, but was also too weak. Stretching the new ones gave me results similar to stretching the old ones. By accident, I installed both into one valve and liked the results - so that's what I've done. For now. The tension may be too much for extended playing, but for the time being, I'll leave it like this. It may very well have been perfect had neither of the springs been stretched out.


Conn Mellophone
Modified French Horn wall bracket holds the Mellophone out of harm's way.

Conn Mellophone
There it is!


Discussion:

Like everything else I do, I researched the hell out of this. Old things fascinate me, and I like to find out as much of their history as possible. The following is what I've found out so far, with the caveat that doing archeological research on a 111 year old horn via the Internet can be challenging. Sources contradict each other, many details are lost in the mists of time, people make ASS-U-ME-tions (assumptions) and/or make things up. One well known site devoted to the brand has multiple and very obvious errors, and to make matters worse; the site is apparently abandoned so no corrections or discussions seem to be possible. Errors and outright fabrications are everywhere on the 'net. For instance, the above 1912 instrument was being sold as a model 6D French Horn - clearly it is not! Another Lulu that wasted a bunch of my time before I could prove it wrong: Conn 6E instruments were NOT introduced in 1911 as reported in several places - Conn didn't use the numerica-alpha model numbers until about a decade later! Other changes that confuses research over a century later could have been a simple production change that at the time meant little or nothing.

The curious situation of valve angle:

Most "Classic" Mellophones of any/all makes have their valves in a completely vertical - or coplanar with the valve slides - orientation. Others, such as the Olds pictured near the top of this page, have them slightly angled, maybe 10 degrees or so. The Conn Mellophone detailed here, as well as all Conns built between 1911 and the early 1930s had the valves angled considerably steeper, about 45 degrees. As its been 50+ years since I played the Olds so I cannot say for certain, but it would seem to me that the sharply angled valve setup as found on my Conn would be more comfortable to play. Interestingly, very few Mellophones other than Conns of this period had valves set at any significant angle. I searched the Horn-U-Copia site and examined 335 Mellphone images, plus a few elsewhere. Other than the period Conns, the only ones I found were a certain Lyon & Healy model, a Martin, a Buescher, something called a "Harwood", a Triebert, and all Mellophones built by Couturier (This last first built instruments for Lyon & Healy, and then was eventually bought out by them). Another Lyon & Healy (apparently built by someone other than Couturier) was somewhere in-between, looks like maybe 15 degrees of angle. All others were vertical or near-vertical, including the only Classic Mellophones of new manufacture I could find: Instruments made in India and sold on eBay among other places. There were also other oddities such as rotary valves, and/or valves set into the middle of the circle that were operated by the bellside hand, two valve instruments, etc.

In addition, most Mellophones seem to have bottom sprung valves, although I noted in passing a few that were top sprung, including a King and a York. Doubtless there are others.

It may make sense to skip the rather large amount of my psychobabble and go directly to the large table that I've made of the data found thus far!

This research is limited to Conn Mellophones and the Conn instrument mostly called a "'French Horn' model Alto", which may have started out as the exact same instrument, but with different leadpipes provided; they eventually diverged somewhat with the latter being larger in size than the former. The "Balad Horn" which is yet another similar not-a-French-Horn instrument (in key of C or Bb), is NOT included in this research - and is more like a right handed piston valved French Horn than a Mellophone as it has considerably more tubing. There are gaps in the data due to the availability or non-availability of reference material for a given year. Names changed, data and names both contradict themselves between various publications even in the same year, etc. The first Mellophone listed is from 1906, which was the model built previous to the premiere of mine, and went through 1942 when World War 2 stopped musical instrument production at Conn. From the limited amount of data I was able to find, apparently Mellophones weren't built again (by Conn) after the war. The 14E appears in a 1958 catalog and is completely conventional in all respects, and the late 50s saw the introduction of the famed 16E "Mellophonium" of Stan Kenton fame.

I undertook an exhaustive search for period literature, particularly catalogs which I consider a "Primary Source". A few photographs helped re-enforce the catalog data, but are considered secondary sources at best. The real problem is that I was only able to locate catalogs from a few years. Conn's newsletter, "Musical Truth" helped some, but the data therein usually wasn't nearly as complete as what was found in catalogs. Multiple gaps remain. The pertinent data is summarized in a rather large table, below. After sifting through all the Conn literature I was able to locate online (on a Saxophone site of all things), I have come to the following conclusions:

(HP=Conn's version of "High Pitch" A=457, whereas LP="Low Pitch" A=440)

In 1911, my instrument was apparently called a "French Horn Model Alto" according to a 1911 "Musical Truth", with F, Eb, D & C leadpipes and main tuning slides for both HP and LP. No 1911 catalog was available that might have more information.

No 1912 info available.

In - or by - 1913, what appears to be the exact same horn was then called the "New Invention Model Mellophone" per the 1913 catalog, also with F, Eb, D & C leadpipes. A "New Invention French Horn Model Alto" was also available, but only with Eb and C leadpipes. So the supported keys were swapped around and so was the model name. HP and LP main slides were provided for both instruments. The two instruments MAY have been identical at this point in time except for which leadpipes were provided - but in later years the "French Horn" Alto was slightly larger than the Mellophone from a picture of both instruments shown together.

1914 appears to be the same as 1913 for both instruments.

In 1917, or by 1917, was apparently when the two started changing. The "French Horn Alto" still had its Eb and C leadpipes, but the Mellophone - now called the "New Wonder", went with F, Eb, D & C main slide crooks in lieu of leadpipes, plus some stylistic changes. This latter horn would play in HP with whatever crook was installed, or a switch to LP with a main slide extension that the crooks plugged into.

By 1919, both instruments were apparently available only as HP or LP - chosen at time of purchase, forgoing including both types of main slides as was done previously. The "French Horn Alto" became Eb only, whereas the Mellophone continued with crooks for the usual 4 keys.

By 1924, the familiar 6E/7E (French Horn Alto) and 4E/5E (Mellophone) nomenclature had appeared alongside the previous names (see table). When the numeric-alpha call-outs first started cannot be determined from this data. I've heard 1920, pretty certain it couldn't have been before that year as a 1920 "Musical Truth" did NOT utilize them - and neither did a 1922 edition of the same; although as dysfunctional as some of Conn's literature seems to be, its may be possible that the numeric-alpha designations were in the catalogs, but not other publications. Even numbers (4E/6E) were LP, odds (5E/7E) were HP - according to the 1924 catalog. According to the 1924 price list, the odd numbers were both HP and LP, presumably switched with different main slides. How long this discord lasted is unknown.

With the above said, an expert at Horn-U-Copia states the numeric-alpha designations started in 1919. He's been studying this type of thing for many years, so I'm more than a bit inclined to believe him. He told me the literature took time to catch up as it was both difficult and expensive to revise it when there was little need to do so. However, I do not know what data he's basing the 1919 date on - but its "close enough" to the oft reported 1920 date. Adding to the confusion is the apparent factoid that Conn either never labeled the actual instruments with the numeric-alpha designations -=OR=- they only did so much later than the time period under consideration.

The situation was identical in 1928 - and presumably 1927 as well.

Conn Mellophones
Courtesy of Horn-U-Copia, comparison picture: 6E/7E on left, 4E/5E on right. Years
unspecified but would seem to be sometime between 1917-ish and the early 1930s.

1929 and 1931 both had ONLY the 4E listed (no 5E, thus no more HP), still with all 4 keys of main slide crooks. The 6E/7E "French Horn Alto" was gone as well. 1930 presumed to be the same. However, the 5E, 6E, and 7E all re-appeared in the 1931 pricelist, but not the catalog. See notes below.

By 1935 however, the 4E underwent a complete redesign. Valve angle returned to the straight pre-1911 angle, top and bottom were swapped so the main slide was now on top, valve slides on the bottom, and the main slide had a rotary valve to select between F and Eb (King had a similar design about this time). This slide could be removed completely and replaced with one to play in C. Key of D capability was lost. Presumably the the 5E, 6E, and 7E were gone for good at this point.

Interestingly, the post-war 14E was a return to a conventional layout with valve slides on top, main slide on bottom, and only F and Eb crooks. No C crook, no F/Eb change valve, straight valves. Why was this done? I can only speculate that the conventional, non-marching "Concert" Mellophone was a dying instrument by this point, sales were probably declining, so features were removed to compete with other Mellophones of the time which all pretty much met this description. Apparently, the 14E first came out in 1958 as it shows in the catalog from that year along with the 16E. The 16E in turn shows in the 1957 catalog, but not in the 1955 version. By 1971, only the 16E "Mellophonium" soldiered on, the 14E appeared in the 1964 price list, but disappeared sometime in the intervening years. But these are beyond the scope of this article.

Getting back to my instrument, my take on all this is that it is the direct ancestor of the 4E/5E, but additional catalogs from the missing years would tighten this timeline up a bit. Several eBay pix with serial numbers were able to partially confirm things, but the best sources are the actual catalogs. Due to at least 3 different versions of the Conn serial number list, photograph dating could be off by as much as two years. I went by the Horn-U-Copia list, which seems to be the best researched. It could also be argued that my instrument is the direct ancestor of both the 4E/5E as well as the 6E/7E. Did the 6E/7E grow in size to become larger than the 4E/5E? Or did the 4E/5E shrink a bit?

Per the picture below, I found a 1912 instrument that is identical to mine, except for a stamping on the side of the 2nd valve "UNION LABEL" which my 1911 doesn't carry (It has a "Trade Mark" Eagle - AKA "Screaming Chicken" instead). Horn-U-Copia says this about it: 1906 - [Conn] began to exclusively use Union labor and instruments made between 1906 and 1916 bear a union label. However, The below picture shows that not all instruments were thus marked!

Conn Mellophone
Top: My 1911 horn. Bottom: 1912 example. Note the two stampings are inverted from each other in orientation.
Union initials mean: "Metal Polishers, Buffers, Platers, Brass and Silver Workers", and was AFL affiliated.

Possible explanation as suggested by the Horn-U-Copia forum: The valve assy could very well have been manufactured far earlier than the horn assembly date, and was in the bottom of a bin until 1911 when it was finally used by the then-Unionized workforce. This actually makes quite a bit of sense, as similar things often happened with firearms assembly, even as late as post World War 2.

As for playing it - the above referenced newly acquired mellophone mouthpiece is vastly better than the Cornet mouthpiece which is now in the hands of a happy cornetist by way of eBay! It plays pretty well in the keys of F and Eb, and not bad with the D crook - as long as you remember to set the valve slides to the appropriate marks. When the C crook is installed, intonation suffers in the very low end. Probably because it needs a different mouthpiece, and I have zero idea what that mouthpiece would look like or how it would differ from the Bach #6 that I have. Maybe I'll stumble across an original pair at some point...

Notes on the data:

1) Mellophone models made prior to my particular model all had vertical valves (1906 referenced). Most other brands also had vertical, or near vertical valves as well. Instruments made from 1911 until the model 4E reconfiguration ca 1932-1935 had the more comfortable angled valves. Why they went back to vertical valves is unknown. See the above inset.

2) Many of these mellophones came with two 2nd valve slides as well, a long and a short. This was presumably done so the horn could be correctly tuned for all 4 keys that it supported. My 1911 instrument's 2nd valve slide is long enough to support the lower keys, yet short enough to support the upper - apparently not all versions were so "lucky". Other subtle differences in 2nd valve slides are noted in the table.

3) Conn's marketing people certainly couldn't figure out what to call the two versions. The "French Horn" Alto sometimes had "French Horn" in quotations, other times not. At least once it was referred to as a "Circular Alto", the "Wonder" and "New Wonder" nomenclatures came and went, "New Invention" was used for a short time, etc, etc. Once the numeric-alpha model designations came along (e.g. 4E), the names seemed to settle down somewhat.

4) Note inconsistency between the 1924 pricelist and the 1924 catalog as to whether or not the 5E and 7E were HP, or HP/LP. Furthermore, a 1924 "Musical Truth" indicates that the French Horn Model Alto does indeed come with a C crook in addition to its native key of Eb - neither the pricelist nor the catalog indicate this. And even beyond THAT, its full name in that edition of "Musical Truth" is: CIRCULAR ALTO IN Eb WITH C CROOK, OR FRENCH HORN MODEL ALTO - which does NOT appear in the pricelist nor the catalog! The question then arises as to how Conn achieved HP/LP with the Mellophone's 4 key crooks, and the Alto's 2. A main slide extension as was done with the 1917 Mellophone? Perhaps that was never discontinued at all!

5) Both the 1926 pricelist and 1926 catalog agree that the 5E and 7E were HP only, even though their respective names differed between the publications. Several other inconsistencies and contradictions exist: The 1928 catalog and pricelist disagree on what the instruments are called, even though they were in the same booklet that year. Only the 4E appears in catalogs and "Musical Truth" starting in 1929, yet the 4E, 5E, 6E, 7E all appear in the separate 1931 pricelist. This latter would seem to indicate that the 5E, 6E, and 7E were deprecated yet still available for bands that were still using them.

Conn Mellophones and "French Horn" Altos 1906 - 1942
Source Year Model Name Model # Description
Musical Truth 1906 New Wonder Mellophone ---- Main Slide end faces player
HP and LP slides provided
F,Eb,D & C leadpipes
Extra 2nd slide, straight valves
2nd slide projects sideways at angle
Musical Truth 1911 French Horn Model Alto ---- Main Slide end faces down
HP and LP slides provided
Angled Valves
F,Eb,D & C leadpipes
2nd slide projects downwards with nibs
Actual Instrument 1911 Actual instrument
matches the 1911
French Horn Model Alto
in all respects.
??? Missing HP slide.
Catalog Page 1913 New Invention
French Horn Model Alto
---- Main Slide end faces down
HP and LP slides provided
Angled Valves
Eb & C leadpipes
2nd slide projects downwards with nibs
Catalog Page 1913 New Invention
Model Mellophone
---- Main Slide end faces down
HP and LP slides provided
Angled Valves
F,Eb,D & C leadpipes
2nd slide projects downwards with nibs
Photograph 1913 Photograph doesn't
exactly match either type.
Perhaps w/replacement parts?
--- 2nd slide projects downwards with ring (!!)
Main slide spit valve in odd
location/orientation
Catalog Page 1914 New Invention
"French Horn" Model Alto
---- Main Slide end faces down
HP and LP slides provided
Angled Valves
Eb & C leadpipes
2nd slide projects downwards with nibs
Catalog Page 1914 New Invention
Model Mellophone
---- Main Slide end faces down
HP and LP slides provided
Angled Valves
F,Eb,D & C leadpipes
2nd slide projects downwards with nibs
Supplement Page * 1917 French Horn Model Alto ---- Main Slide end faces down
HP and LP slides provided
Angled Valves
Eb & C leadpipes
2nd slide projects downwards with nibs
Supplement Page * 1917 New Wonder Mellophone ---- Main Slide end faces down
HP with an LP main slide extension
Extra 2nd slide, angled valves
F,Eb, D & C main slide crooks (use
with LP main slide extension for LP)
2nd slide projects downwards with ring
Photograph 1918 Photograph appears
to match the 1917
New Wonder Mellophone.
???
Catalog Page 1919 New Wonder Model
"French Horn" Alto
---- Main Slide end faces down
Apparently either HP or LP only, no extra slides
Angled Valves
Eb only, no crooks
2nd slide projects downwards with ring
Catalog Page 1919 New Wonder Mellophone ---- Main Slide end faces down
Apparently either HP or LP only, no extra slides
Extra 2nd slide, angled valves
F,Eb, D & C main slide crooks
2nd slide projects downwards with ring
Photograph 1919 Photograph appears
to match the 1919 New
Wonder Model Mellophone
(has all four crooks).
???
Musical Truth 1920 Circular Alto --- Apparently the same as the 1919 "French Horn"
Alto. Lithograph only, no data.
Musical Truth 1920 Mellophone --- Apparently the same as the 1919 New Wonder
Mellophone. In F, Eb, D & C.
Photograph 1921 Photograph appears
to match the 1919 New
Wonder Model Mellophone
(has C crook installed).
???
Musical Truth 1921 Circular Alto --- Exact same page as the 1920 edition.
Musical Truth 1921 Mellophone --- Exact same page as the 1920 edition.
Musical Truth 1922 Circular Alto --- Exact same page as the 1920 edition.
Musical Truth 1922 Mellophone --- Exact same page as the 1920 edition..
Photograph 1922 Photograph appears
to match the 1919 New
Wonder Model Mellophone
(has all four crooks).
???
Price List 1924 French Horn Model Alto 6E, 7E No data, no picture. 6E=LP, 7E=HP & LP
Price List 1924 Mellophone 4E, 5E No data, no picture. 4E=LP, 5E=HP & LP
Catalog Page 1924 French Horn Alto 6E, 7E Main Slide end faces down
Select HP or LP only, no extra slides
Angled Valves
Eb only, no crooks
2nd slide projects downwards with ring
Catalog Page 1924 Wonder Mellophone 4E, 5E Main Slide end faces down
Select HP or LP only, no extra slides
No extra 2nd slide indicated, angled valves
F,Eb, D & C main slide crooks
2nd slide projects downwards with ring
Musical Truth 1924 Circular Alto
French Horn Model Alto
(both names!)
6E, 7E Key of Eb with C crook included - no
crook mentioned in catalog or pricelist.
Musical Truth 1924 Mellophone 4E, 5E
Photograph 1925 Photograph appears
to match one of the 1919
instruments, main tuning
slide missing, no other
crooks present.
???
Catalog Page 1926 French Horn Alto 6E, 7E Main Slide end faces down
Select HP or LP only, no extra slides
Angled Valves
Eb only, no crooks
2nd slide projects downwards with ring
Catalog Page 1926 Wonder Mellophone 4E, 5E Main Slide end faces down
Select HP or LP only, no extra slides
No extra 2nd slide indicated, angled valves
F,Eb, D & C main slide crooks
2nd slide projects downwards with ring
Price List 1926 French Horn Model Alto 6E, 7E No data, no picture. 6E=LP, 7E=HP
Price List 1926 Mellophone 4E, 5E No data, no picture. 4E=LP, 5E=HP
Price List 1927 French Horn Model Alto 6E, 7E No data, no picture. 6E=LP, 7E=HP
Price List 1927 Mellophone 4E, 5E No data, no picture. 4E=LP, 5E=HP
Musical Truth 1927 New Wonder Mellophone 4E 5E, 6E, 7E aren't mentioned
Catalog Page
Pricelist
(Same document)
1928 French Horn Alto
French Horn Model Alto
6E, 7E Main Slide end faces down
Select HP or LP only, no extra slides
Angled Valves
Eb only, no crooks
2nd slide projects downwards with ring
Catalog Page
Pricelist
(Same document)
1928 Wonder Mellophone
Mellophone
4E, 5E Main Slide end faces down
Select HP or LP only, no extra slides
No extra 2nd slide indicated, angled valves
F,Eb, D & C main slide crooks
2nd slide projects downwards with ring
Musical Truth 1928 Mellophone 4E 5E, 6E, 7E aren't mentioned
Catalog Page 1929 Mellophone 4E Main Slide end faces down
LP only
No extra 2nd slide indicated, angled valves
F,Eb, D & C main slide crooks
2nd slide projects downwards with ring
Catalog Page 1930 Mellophone 4E Main Slide end faces down
LP only
No extra 2nd slide indicated, angled valves
F,Eb, D & C main slide crooks
2nd slide projects downwards with ring
Catalog Page 1931 Mellophone 4E Main Slide end faces down
LP only
No extra 2nd slide indicated, angled valves
F,Eb, D & C main slide crooks
2nd slide projects downwards with ring
Price List 1931 French Horn Model Alto 6E, 7E No data, no picture. 6E=LP, 7E=HP
Price List 1931 Mellophone 4E, 5E No data, no picture. 4E=LP, 5E=HP
Brochure 1935 Mellophone

(Complete redesign)

4E Main Slide end faces down
Valve slides are now on bottom of instrument
Main slide on top
LP only
No extra 2nd slide indicated, straight valves
Rotary valve to select F/Eb in main slide,
with main slide crook for C
2nd slide type not shown
Catalog 1937 Mellophone 4E Main Slide end faces down
Valve slides on bottom of instrument
Main slide on top
LP only
No extra 2nd slide indicated, straight valves
Rotary valve to select F/Eb in main slide,
with main slide crook for C
2nd slide type not shown
Photograph 1937 Photograph appears
to match the 1937 catalog,
topside pic only.
4E
Musical Truth 1941 Mellophone 4E Photograph appears to match the 1935 4E,
topside pic only.
Photograph 1942 Photograph appears
to match the 1935 4E.
4E 2nd slide projects sideways at
angle on bottom - no nibs or ring.

* Publication date uncertain, source claims 1917-1920


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