Hill & Owen Grand Piano

Description (Brief)
This grand piano was made by Hill & Owen in Boston, Massachusetts in 1851. Very little is known of the partnership of Freedom Hill and Henry Owen. Both appear in the in the Boston city directory in 1851 but are no longer listed after that date. To get at the strings, the entire lid and soundboard must be raised, which makes the piano top-heavy, tending to tip over to its spine. This is the only known grand piano by this firm. This piano is serial number 119(?), and has a compass of CC-c5, “Plastic Elastic Touch” direct-blow jack action, strings underneath soundboard, CC-EE single-strung, FF-c5 double-strung, 2 pedals: una corda and dampers, partial iron frame with iron tension bars, straight-strung, and a veneered case.
Currently not on view
Object Name
date made
Hill & Owen
Physical Description
iron (strings: material)
felt (hammers: material)
iron (frame material)
place made
United States: Massachusetts, Boston
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Music & Musical Instruments
See more items in
Culture and the Arts: Musical Instruments
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Gift of Hugo Worch
Additional Media

Visitor Comments

Add a comment about this object

**Please read before submitting the form**

Have a comment or question about this object to share with the community? Please use the form below. Selected comments will appear on this page and may receive a museum response (but we can't promise). Please note that we generally cannot answer questions about the history, rarity, or value of your personal artifacts.

Have a question about anything else, or would you prefer a personal response? Please visit our FAQ or contact page.

Personal information will not be shared or result in unsolicited e-mail. See our privacy policy.

Enter the characters shown in the image.