This is a fine sounding, Chicago-made parlour guitar. It was distributed by the department store Montgomery Ward & Co during the mail order catalogue era of the 1920s and 30s. During this period guitar makers like Lyon and Healy, Washburn, Gibson and others all made guitars for Sears and Montgomery Ward.
This guitar is in very good condition overall, and plays with a soft, easy action. It has a spruce top, mahogany neck and sides, and a rosewood fingerboard & bridge.
There is a crack in the lower area of the back. It is through the lacquer, and into the wood, but the split has not opened, and could easily be reglued. It looks like it’s been there for some time, and appears to be stable, ie – it has not moved or widened. The original wooden nut is present. It has had a fine crack reglued, with a shim under it to raise its height.
Apart from that, this lovely little one shows no structural issues, and appears to be in totally original & undamaged condition. The neck features a deep, soft V relief which is quite comfortable to play. The action and intonation are good – kind of amazing really. Original frets are present and show little sign of wear. The neck joint is solid with no cracks showing. The original tuners work perfectly and hold tuning well.
It features a very alluring “island” motif on the front with palm trees, coconut trees and beach scene – the ideal place to play your Montgomery Ward 1930s parlour guitar.
Amazingly, this one comes in its original “heavy duty” cardboard case, which is somewhat worse for wear, but it’s here in all its own glory.