Knutsen Harp Guitar    

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This is the instrument that Dan mentioned on page 61 of the Noe/Most book.
It has many unusual features - not the least of which is the nearly all-koa construction!
It was the first  instrument seen from Knutsen's 1913-1914 "Harp Guitar Factory" (his residence) at 1200 Stewart Street in Seattle (another, HGS34 just came to light).
These may have been the last harp guitars that Knutsen built. Note how the bass headstock has evolved to become basically vertical. The geared tuners for the bass strings have also been replaced with zither pin tuners - I thought possibly to accommodate the larger number of strings (seven instead of the earlier five) - but two other instruments now known have the same pin tuners, with only five bass strings.
The fretted neck's headstock is what I'll call "banana-shaped." This headstock is also seen on two of the instruments on the "New Hawaiian Family" label, and seems to be common to instruments of all types during this period.
My favorite feature is the neck stringing - nine strings, with the three high notes doubled - it sounds rather pretty - basically like half a 12-string guitar.
Another interesting feature of this guitar is the carving of the neck, which is biased thicker on the bass side.
Note also the shared string holes on the bridge, and that the treble strings were all moved down one bridge pin hole position (a new hole was added at the end) - I imagine they were originally too close to the neck's E-string, and got in the way.
The three vertical bridge supports look old and match pretty well, but were undoubtedly added later. Also added at a later date was a very sloppy, crude neck heel - somehow pasted over the original, heel-less neck joint. 

hgs1.jpg (31037 bytes) hgs1head.jpg (50479 bytes) hgs1label.jpg (56723 bytes) hgs1headback.jpg (45526 bytes) hgs1back.jpg (32468 bytes)

Click on a picture to enlarge
(images copyright Gregg Miner)

Knutsen Archives Inventory Number

HGS1

                 Category

Seattle Harp Guitars

                 Body Style

"Lower Bass Point"

                 Current or last known owner

Gregg Miner

              Year (approx)

1913-1914

                 Label

Harp Guitar Factory

                 Label Code SE7

                 Courses / Strings

20 course: 9 strings on neck, 7 bass, 7 treble

                 Frets

straight

                 Scale length 25-3/8"
                 Neck Joint no heel, later heel grafted on

Woods

Top

koa

Back & Sides

koa

Neck

fir

Fingerboard

koa

Bridge

mahogany

Headstock veneer both: koa

Binding, trim

Top

maple / red wood / maple

Back

maple

Fingerboard

single maple stripes

Headstock(s)

none

Soundhole multi-colored rope

                 Inlay

fancy pearl fret markers

                 Pickguard

none

                 Comments

Zither pin bass tuners. Neck biased thicker on bass side. Note shared holes on bridge, treble strings moved down one (new hole added). 3 vertical bridge supports, neck heel not original.

 

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