Creek Don't Rise

Homer Ledford Dulcimer
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Author:  paulrace [ Mon Sep 10, 2018 8:26 am ]
Post subject:  Homer Ledford Dulcimer

A reader writes:
Because of recent health problems with my family Ive gone through our attic and have found a dulcimer that at least dates back to early 1900s in excellent shape I know nothing about it though and him in a position that I need to sell it but I dont know its value or what to even look for for medical expenses for my father if you could give me a call that would be great my number xxx-xxx-xxxx thank you

Thanks for getting in touch. I am sorry about the financial situation with ailing elderly relatives. We've been there ourselves more than once.

Regarding your dulcimer, I'll warn you ahead of time that most dulcimers made in the early 1900s had no brand names, and their quality varied widely between builders. There are so many handmade dulcimers and so few dulcimer players that there is no particular collector's market for most of them. I've seen quite a few that were playable but not notable go for $35-$85 at auction. A few were made in the 1950s JUST to be decorations, so they're fancy but not actually musical instruments.

If you can reply to this e-mail and send me some photos I can be more specific. Also, is there a builder's name on it anywhere?


The reader replied:

Thank you for getting back with me. I have since learned that the dulcimer is number 1047 of Homer Ledford. Please let me know if you need clearer photos considering it’s hard to take a photo inside that small heart

[Sorry, the photos timed out of my system so I can't add them to this post]


It is a beautiful instrument. Homer Ledford is well known and some of his dulcimers have changed hands at auction in the $300-500 range. Many were actually made in the 1970s but used old-timey techniques and very old wood (like from century-old church pews and the like). So they seem very much like authentic Appalachian historical instruments, but they play very well (unlike many of the very old dulcimers).

You may have an instrument that would be of interest to collectors or professional players (of which there are very few).

Unfortunately I don't know anyone in the market for one at this time.

Let me ask around. In the meantime, check out online auctions for other Ledbetters and see what they're going for. Again, there aren't many so you won't get a firm sense of the thing's value overnight.

The reader replied:

Thank you so much. I love being able to touch a piece of history like this. Thank you for your info and let me know whatever you find out kind sir. Thank you again I am eternally grateful

Author:  paulrace [ Mon Sep 10, 2018 8:27 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Homer Ledford Dulcimer

Note: If you have any interest in this item and would consider paying what it is probably worth to a serious player or collector, let me know, and I'll get in touch with the owner.

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