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Encyclopedia of Disc Music Boxes 1881 - 1920
       A History,
          Catalog Raisonné,
                and Appreciation.
                          By Q. David Bowers
                                     An AMICA-International Publication

Q. David Bowers has collected, studied, and enjoyed automatic musical instruments, beginning in 1960. In the intervening years he has written several books on the subject, including A Guide Book of Automatic Musical Instruments (1966), Put Another Nickel In (1968), Encyclopedia of Automatic Musical Instruments (1971), and Treasures of Mechanical Music (co-authored with Arthur A. Reblitz, 1981). He has contributed many articles to the journals of the Musical Box Society International and AMICA (Automatic Musical Instrument Collectors Association), and is one of just four recipients of the Musical Box Society International’s Lifetime Service Award. The author, whose main business over the years has been as a dealer in rare coins, has traveled extensively through America and Europe seeking information relating to automatic musical instruments.


Other Instruments in the Collection
These are some of the other coin pianos, orchestrions and band-organs in the Bovey Collection in Virginia City and Nevada City, Montana.

Photos taken by Art Reblitz in June 2001

Seeburg L #163,424, made in 1926; Nevada City Hotel lobby.“Butterfly Organ,” possibly a Frati, circa 1900. Nevada City Music Hall; from B.A.B. hoard.38. Cremona style 3 coin piano #121,649, made in 1912; N.C. Music Hall. Charlie Bovey’s first coin piano.

Seeburg KT with xylophone #163,183, made in 1926. Restored by AMICAN Mike Edwards after this photo was taken.Wurlitzer style 103 band organ #3,995, circa 1928; N.C. Music Hall.Wurlitzer style 150 band organ #2,741, made in 1920; N.C. Music Hall.

54-keyless “Unpainted Organ.” Originally a barrel organ, with façade possibly made by Bruder. N.C. Music Hall; from B.A.B. hoard.Seeburg K #75,783, made in 1917 with eagle motif art glass; Bale of Hay Saloon, Virginia City.Story & Clark reed organ, circa 1905, playing 10-tune A rolls; N.C. Music Hall.

Cremona style G coin piano #10,836 with flute pipes, made in 1914; V.C. Opera House lobby.Wurlitzer 180 band organ #4,182, made in 1929. Original case, bass and accompaniment pipes (which have been unmitered!) & chest, center melody pipes & chest, stack, reservoir, duplex roll mechanism & drive and blower, with brass pipes added by Ozzie Wurdeman. N.C. Music Hall.Seeburg K #61,954, made in 1915 with flute pipes and “three dancing girls” motif art glass; Wells Fargo Coffee House, V.C.

89-key Gavioli fairground organ, circa 1905-1910. N.C. Music Hall; from B.A.B. hoard.Sedman House, Nevada City.Fairweather Inn, Virginia City. Guests rooms are furnished with authentic Victorian furniture.

Regina Sublima Style 304 with front removed, circa 1910; N.C. Music Hall.Peerless 44 coin piano #6,294 with front removed, circa 1915; N.C. Music Hall.Mills Violano #2,401, circa 1923; N.C. Music Hall.

Fred Dolle band organ (probably a Gavioli made c. early 1900s); N.C. Music Hall, from B.A.B. hoard.Wurlitzer flat-front Pianino #72,102, made in 1925; N.C. Music Hall.Gavioli fairground organ converted to play 66-keyless B.A.B. rolls; N.C. Music Hall, from B.A.B. hoard.

Frati barrel organ sold by John Muzzio; McFarland Curatorial Center.Mills Deluxe Violano #3,395, made in 1926; Wells Fargo Coffee Shop, Virginia City.Wurlitzer Automatic Harp; Wells Fargo Coffee Shop, Virginia City.

Cremona Photoplayer left side cabinet.Cremona Photoplayer #11,487, made circa 1915. Virginia City Opera House orchestra pit.Cremona Photoplayer right side cabinet.

Regina 27” disc music box #21,601.Molinari barrel piano with mandoline mechanism; Molinari shop, N.C.Music arranging drum; Molinari shop, N.C.

Brass pipes; Molinari shop, N.C.Barrel pinning frame; Molinari shop, N.C.Pipe making clamp; Molinari shop, N.C.

Machine for making barrel organ staples automatically; Molinari shop, N.C.Workbench; Molinari shop, N.C.Casting patterns; Molinari shop, N.C.

Incomplete Molinari barrel organ; Molinari shop, N.C.Interior of incomplete Molinari barrel organ; Molinari shop, N.C.

Remaining inventory of unsold B.A.B. music rolls; Molinari shop, N.C.


 

©2016 AMICA International
Automatic Musical Instrument Collectors' Association,
a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization.


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