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Emil Rittershausen Piccolo

Hi could anyone help with serial numbers for Emil Rittershausen Berlin Piccolos , I am trying find the age of the piccolo
Any help would be much appreciated
 
my one is number 4187 but I have found different info like
serial number 3500 dates at 1908 and serial number 5000 dates 1921 this would date it to around 1919 - 1920 or His firm kept making until 1940 when the factory was bombed. They made a total of 5300 or so this would date it to around late 1920s
 

pete

Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
Administrator
my one is number 4187 but I have found different info like ... serial number 3500 dates at 1908 and serial number 5000 dates 1921 this would date it to around 1919 - 1920 or His firm kept making until 1940 when the factory was bombed. They made a total of 5300 or so this would date it to around late 1920s
Did you ... answer your own question? :D

First, it's at least 5753 flutes/piccolos. However, I do mention time travel, below.

I've corrected museums before. As an example, the Library of Congress says that this piccolo was made between 1908 and 1921, but it was acquired in 1919. This, of course, means that Rittershausen perfected the world's first time-travelling piccolo. So, I don't think serial numbers or dates pulled off a museum's website necessarily mean anything: that time-traveling flute had s/n 4102. From what I can Google in 15 minutes or less, you're trying to determine if the picc was made before Emil's death in 1927 because those horns are worth more. That's fine. No worries. I think you're going to be out of luck, though. MOST of the ones I see that were acquired and/or are listed as being from the 1920s and earlier had serial numbers in the 1xxx or less range. Maybe, possibly, perhaps in the 2xxx range. There is also contradictory information in The New Langwill Index (according to an ebay ad), but the New Langwill Index isn't 100% accurate, either. It's very good at general information and that's it.

Clearing up another thing I see on this ad, Carl Fischer (New York) was an importer. They imported, probably most famously, Evette & Schaeffer Buffet-Crampon SA saxophones. All the Carl Fischer stamp on an instrument means is that it was imported, not that the horn is somehow lower quality and is worth $2000 less, per the ebay ad I linked to. Additionally, I haven't even begun any kind of survey to determine if Rittershausen stamped all their flute joints with a number or not. Or maybe just on some. I assume nobody else has. That doesn't mean an unstamped joint lowers the value to zero. Arrrrgggh. Me hate ad! I'd be more annoyed if I had another Rittershausen horn that I was selling on ebay, but I don't, so I'll rein in the hate. (Screenshots attached of said bad ad.)

If you want to say that Rittershausen produced 5800 horns from 1876 to 1940, that'd mean that average production was only 91 horns per year, so it's mathematically possible that you have a pre-1927 piccolo. It's also possible that Rittershausen had a different serial number chart for piccs and flutes, or he decided to start each year with a specific number, or when Emil died, his widow re-started serial numbers at 4000 or 5000 or some other random number. Yes, I've seen all these happen before.

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Did you ... answer your own question? :D

First, it's at least 5753 flutes/piccolos. However, I do mention time travel, below.

I've corrected museums before. As an example, the Library of Congress says that this piccolo was made between 1908 and 1921, but it was acquired in 1919. This, of course, means that Rittershausen perfected the world's first time-travelling piccolo. So, I don't think serial numbers or dates pulled off a museum's website necessarily mean anything: that time-traveling flute had s/n 4102. From what I can Google in 15 minutes or less, you're trying to determine if the picc was made before Emil's death in 1927 because those horns are worth more. That's fine. No worries. I think you're going to be out of luck, though. MOST of the ones I see that were acquired and/or are listed as being from the 1920s and earlier had serial numbers in the 1xxx or less range. Maybe, possibly, perhaps in the 2xxx range. There is also contradictory information in The New Langwill Index (according to an ebay ad), but the New Langwill Index isn't 100% accurate, either. It's very good at general information and that's it.

Clearing up another thing I see on this ad, Carl Fischer (New York) was an importer. They imported, probably most famously, Evette & Schaeffer Buffet-Crampon SA saxophones. All the Carl Fischer stamp on an instrument means is that it was imported, not that the horn is somehow lower quality and is worth $2000 less, per the ebay ad I linked to. Additionally, I haven't even begun any kind of survey to determine if Rittershausen stamped all their flute joints with a number or not. Or maybe just on some. I assume nobody else has. That doesn't mean an unstamped joint lowers the value to zero. Arrrrgggh. Me hate ad! I'd be more annoyed if I had another Rittershausen horn that I was selling on ebay, but I don't, so I'll rein in the hate. (Screenshots attached of said bad ad.)

If you want to say that Rittershausen produced 5800 horns from 1876 to 1940, that'd mean that average production was only 91 horns per year, so it's mathematically possible that you have a pre-1927 piccolo. It's also possible that Rittershausen had a different serial number chart for piccs and flutes, or he decided to start each year with a specific number, or when Emil died, his widow re-started serial numbers at 4000 or 5000 or some other random number. Yes, I've seen all these happen before.

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Thanks Pete , This was why asking just so much conflicting information , I am still none the wiser . I know you cant go by ebay listings and the Langwill is a guide , Yes mathematically possible , I was working it as 100 horns a year give or take a few with production down during and after the first world war political and economic effects. exports to America picking up in the 1920s . So i was thinking my one around 1919 and made for the European market this is the feed back I got from the Flute History Channel , but as you can tell I just don't know . I am getting quotes for full refurbishment but if I go for it or not will depend on if its before or after ?
 
Thanks Pete , This was why asking just so much conflicting information , I am still none the wiser . I know you cant go by ebay listings and the Langwill is a guide , Yes mathematically possible , I was working it as 100 horns a year give or take a few with production down during and after the first world war political and economic effects. exports to America picking up in the 1920s . So i was thinking my one around 1919 and made for the European market this is the feed back I got from the Flute History Channel , but as you can tell I just don't know . I am getting quotes for full refurbishment but if I go for it or not will depend on if its before or after ?
Was also thinking If my one was after , It would mean that they where making around 116 + a year after his passing that's 1513 in 13 years ???
 
Carl Fischer also was a Musical Instrument Dealer, and imported wooden flutes made by Emil Rittershausen, Berlin Germany, from the 1890s to 1914, Can this be true ?? I wonder if they still have any records from that time
 
Thank for all the help , I have one more question . Iam about to book the Piccolo in for a full overhaul is this definitely worth doing or will it .
 

pete

Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
Administrator
Carl Fischer also was a Musical Instrument Dealer.
Well, according to Wikipedia. Really, the overall effect is the same: you're ending up with a horn stamped "Carl Fischer" whether you bought it at Carl's original store or if you just had it imported.

I wonder if they still have any records from that time
https://www.carlfischer.com. Don't count on them to have any records. If they do and want to share, please post back! (I will say I'm suspicious of anything dated to 1914 for several extremely good reasons.)

Was also thinking If my one was after , It would mean that they where making around 116 + a year after his passing that's 1513 in 13 years ???
If you want to say that Rittershausen produced 5800 horns from 1876 to 1940, that'd mean that average production was only 91 horns per year, not 116. I don't know if production of brand new instruments continued under his widow, or just assembly from left-over parts, but she sold them. IMO, I find it doubtful that any or very many horns were produced during WWI (1914-1918), so you've got that to worry about. Germany was also hit hard with a variety of war reparations after WWI. The Great Depression was also worldwide.

Iam about to book the Piccolo in for a full overhaul is this definitely worth doing or will it .
Will it ... blend? Probably.

If you are looking to try to sell the picc, you should not get it overhauled. The people that would be interested in buying it would probably have their own ideas for what they want in an overhaul. You also still don't know how much the thing's actually worth, so you might end up spending way more for the overhaul than the picc is actually worth.

There are several dealers out there that are selling Rittershausen piccs -- not just in ebay ads -- and you should ask one of them their opinion. You could also do what I mentioned earlier and try to get dating information from museums, etc. Hey, that's what I do when I do research. It's not hard. It's just time consuming.
 
Hello alltogether. I just inheritet One of these wooden piccolos of e. Rittershausen. It Gas the Number 4707, a six pointed Star and has no cracks as far as i cam see. Would somebody know what this Instrument is worth?

Sounds Bad for the First Reading this. But i know, that my grandad would have liked the idea that it would be heard some day again.

thanks for all replies
 
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