Gibson F5 mandolin #72615

Signed by Lloyd Loar March 27, 1923

Repair completed  October 2017

Repair issues

  • Non-original stain or finish (lacquer, circa 1930's)

  • Re-fretted with wide frets

  • Lower point block not original material

  • Non-original tuners and tailpiece cover (pickguard, bridge base, truss rod cover original)

Repair job

  • Remove finish and replace with water stain sunburst and varnish finish (back of the neck and face of the headstock left as is)

  • Replace lower point block

  • Re-fret with original style .040" fretwire

  • Replace tuners and make new tailpiece cover, bridge saddle and pickguard support bracket

  • New pearl nut

William Griffith, circa 1923

An exceptional sounding mandolin, helped in part by thinner plates than original specifications, due to heavy sanding from previous refinishing. 

This mandolin originally belonged to William Griffith of Atlanta, Georgia who was director of the Griffith School of Music in Atlanta, as well as a Gibson teacher/agent, and featured in endorsements in the company's literature of the period. It was also 'brother' to the only Loar signed A-5 mandolin (#74003 Sept 20, 1923) that was owned by William’s wife, Ms.Mary Butt Griffith, and has been owned or performed on by such influential players as Tut Taylor, Norman Blake, Sam Bush, David Bromberg, Frank Wakefield, Hershel Sizemore, Rick Ryman, Darryl Wolfe, Tony Williamson and Charley Rappaport. Here is Tut Taylor's interesting account of how he purchased both instruments from William's sister in the 1960's (courtesy, It was also loaned to Randy Wood early in his career by Norman to use as a model for his own F-5 mandolins.