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 ARCHIVED TOPIC: Banjitar Help with this old Gibson guitar-banjo

Please note this is an archived topic, so it is locked and unable to be replied to. You may, however, start a new topic and refer to this topic with a link:

atkinsmusic - Posted - 03/12/2010:  16:21:15

I have an old gibson banjo guitar, banjitar, six-string banjo, whatever you call it. THe serial number is 543 or 548. I can't tell what model number or what year it is.

You can find more pictures at:

Edited by - atkinsmusic on 03/12/2010 16:31:04

atkinsmusic - Posted - 03/12/2010:  16:28:53

Just a quick follow up question. There's a signature on the underside of the skin head. I can't make it out. You can see it at the link above....there's a few pictures of it.

Bill Rogers - Posted - 03/12/2010:  19:07:47

I'm not sure of the banjo model; it's early '20s though. The head is a Joseph Rogers three-star, a top-end skin head and well worth preserving. The signature and stars were rubber-stamped on the heads.

Edited by - Bill Rogers on 03/12/2010 21:33:15

tpbiii - Posted - 03/13/2010:  03:48:25


jims38134 - Posted - 03/13/2010:  04:22:32

I am not an expert, but the Jos B Rogers signature looks odd to me. Also, XXX? I thought they were three "stars" not X's.

rexhunt - Posted - 03/13/2010:  04:42:21

According to the Rogers book, there were two different signatures used depending on which tannery it was made in. The triple X was the second best I think. I think it's probably a GB-4 too. Didn't the style 4s back then have the fleur de Lis inlay on the headstock? The rim looks bigger than the standard for the tenors - what is the diameter? Also, does it have any sort of tone ring?


Edited by - rexhunt on 03/13/2010 08:36:22

atkinsmusic - Posted - 03/13/2010:  04:58:41

Diameter is 14".

tpbiii - Posted - 03/13/2010:  07:35:08

I'm quite certain it is a GB-4. We have had one for years. Norman Blake has one he calls the "dreaded big banjo" -- he plays it quite a bit on the "Chattanooga Sugar Babe" album.

Here are pictures with our 1924 RB-4



Edited by - tpbiii on 03/13/2010 07:45:26

atkinsmusic - Posted - 03/13/2010:  11:57:59

Very nice instruments Tom. And thanks to all who helped me out. I've already listed this banjo on ebay....true reserve. I have no idea what its worth...but I guess it's worth whatever it brings.

if you are curious to follow it ..... here's the link:

5stringpicker2 - Posted - 03/13/2010:  14:35:02

Different that's for sure.

(I )===='---<::)

atkinsmusic - Posted - 03/20/2010:  05:54:05

thank you all for your expertise and your help. Auction is ending in a few hours.....i'm curious to see where it ends. Again----thanks a lot. --denise

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