Klemm & Brother's Violin

Description (Brief)
This violin was made in Schönbach, Germany around 1870. This instrument, along with many others, was probably made in Schönbach on contract to George and August Klemm, members of the well-known Klemm family of instrument and string makers in Markneukirchen. John G. Klemm and his brother, Frederick August Klemm immigrated to Philadelphia and established Klemm & Brother’s in 1819. From then until 1879 the company acted as instrument importers and music publishers to the American musical public. In addition to instruments of the violin family, Klemm & Brother’s also sold strings, wind instruments and even pianos. This commercial Schönbach violin, without corner blocks, is constructed with the neck and top block of maple in one piece. The long, square corners are beveled, as are the f-hole wings and the button. The violin is accompanied by an arched wooden trapezoidal case. This violin is made of a two-piece table of spruce, one-piece back of maple cut on 45o with mild irregular figure descending slightly to the left, ribs of similar maple, plain maple neck (with top block), pegbox and scroll, and a semi-transparent orange-brown varnish.
Currently not on view
Object Name
Date made
Physical Description
spruce (table material)
maple (back material)
overall: 24 in x 7 1/4 in x 3 in; 60.96 cm x 18.415 cm x 7.62 cm
place made
Deutschland: Sachsen, Schonbach
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
collector/donor number
See more items in
Culture and the Arts: Musical Instruments
Music & Musical Instruments
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Arthur M. Greenwood
Additional Media

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