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Thread: S. S. Stewart

  1. #1
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    Default S. S. Stewart

    Hello all,

    I found an S. S. Stewart A-style mandolin from 1920 on Facebook Marketplace. It's listed for $200 marked down from $1500. Caught my eye. Anyone know anything about these? Particularly if this is a good deal or not and what the sound may be like.

    --Sam
    Samuel Acus

    2021 Duff Two-Point
    2004 Weber Gallatin F5
    2021 Gold Tone 5-String Electric
    1936 (?) Kalamazoo A5
    1940s Regal Guitar

  2. #2
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    Default Re: S. S. Stewart

    Stewart branded mandolins were built by several manufacturers over a considerable period of time, and vary quite a bit in appointments and build quality.
    Without pictures, it is not possible to say anything further.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: S. S. Stewart

    If the one you're referring to is the oval hole instrument in NY state, it appears to be a Chicago built instrument. My guess is that it was built by Regal. The Stewart name was owned by Buegeleisen and Jacobson [B & J] at the time this instrument was built.

    These Chicago built flatbacks, when in good repair, typically have what I describe as a clear sound, with good sustain. Some of them are more powerful than one might think. The sound is very different from that of a typical modern f-hole mandolin-- less percussive, considerably more sustain, and a tone that might be described as more lyrical.

    At any rate, if this one is in playable condition and doesn't need a lot of work, I would call $200 a friendly price.

  4. #4

    Default Re: S. S. Stewart

    I am playing a B & J vended Regal made mandolin right now- and its tone and volume are great. It was branded as a Serenader and has a red spruce top. B & J sold its guitar "big brother" version as well and those sell for high prices when retailed- they appear under both the Serenader and S S Stewart brand and were made in the very early 1930s. It has seen some life and has a crack on the top but it is a good instrument. Post some photos of your mandolin.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  6. #5
    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: S. S. Stewart

    Quote Originally Posted by Mandolinian View Post
    Hello all,

    I found an S. S. Stewart A-style mandolin from 1920 on Facebook Marketplace. It's listed for $200 marked down from $1500. Caught my eye. Anyone know anything about these? Particularly if this is a good deal or not and what the sound may be like.

    --Sam
    The S.S. Stewart name was put on instruments built by several builders. Post a picture.
    "It's comparable to playing a cheese slicer."
    --M. Stillion

    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them"
    --J. Garber

  7. #6
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    Default Re: S. S. Stewart

    <img src="https://scontent-bos5-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t45.5328-4/283345577_4693167244121060_4680871022540152375_n.p ng?stp=dst-png_s960x960&amp;_nc_cat=100&amp;ccb=1-7&amp;_nc_sid=c48759&amp;_nc_ohc=c4sPPbtFFaoAX-NYZID&amp;_nc_ht=scontent-bos5-1.xx&amp;oh=00_AT97hq2QEJIbtYSQbsdU1cyq-qLWBpQNd5we7zB0Jf8M6A&amp;oe=62C03523" alt="No photo description available."/>

    Here's a picture.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Here's a picture.
    Samuel Acus

    2021 Duff Two-Point
    2004 Weber Gallatin F5
    2021 Gold Tone 5-String Electric
    1936 (?) Kalamazoo A5
    1940s Regal Guitar

  8. #7
    bon vivant jaycat's Avatar
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    Default Re: S. S. Stewart

    The mandolin is listed in Rock Tavern, NY but the seller lives in Fort Worth, Texas? Curious.
    "The paths of experimentation twist and turn through mountains of miscalculations, and often lose themselves in error and darkness!"
    --Leslie Daniel, "The Brain That Wouldn't Die."

    Some tunes: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCa1...SV2qtug/videos

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    Default Re: S. S. Stewart

    There is another item that's listed in Rock Tavern, NY so it may just be that he moved, but wasn't able to take all of his stuff so he's selling it, and his relatives or friends will take care of the hand-off.
    Samuel Acus

    2021 Duff Two-Point
    2004 Weber Gallatin F5
    2021 Gold Tone 5-String Electric
    1936 (?) Kalamazoo A5
    1940s Regal Guitar

  10. #9

    Default Re: S. S. Stewart

    I cannot discern the wood used from that photo but this model was sold by a fair few third parties as well as Regal branded through music shops for about 15 years from circa 1920 to about 1935. As we can't see the back of the headstock we don't know if it has recessed tuners behind a plate or exposed strips .Here is one: https://jakewildwood.blogspot.com/20...-flatback.html
    While you are at his site click on Museum and then Regal and scroll down to flat back mandolins- he has one sold under the Washburn 2424 brand and a fancy Bruno but I have a feeling those two are a bit Ritzier than yours but that is typical of this mandolin type- it was sold at a number of price points depending on the wood used and the appointments added to them.

  11. #10
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    Default Re: S. S. Stewart

    Quote Originally Posted by Mandolinian View Post
    Hello all,

    I found an S. S. Stewart A-style mandolin from 1920 on Facebook Marketplace. It's listed for $200 marked down from $1500. Caught my eye. Anyone know anything about these? Particularly if this is a good deal or not and what the sound may be like.

    --Sam
    Sounds like you got a great deal. Enjoy!!
    “Mandolin brands are a guide, not Gospel “
    - Data Nick

  12. Jun-28-2022, 11:43am


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