Author Archives: Lynn Wheelwright

Gibson’s 17″ Pre-War Electrics

ES-300 of 1940-’43

Among musicians and collectors, Gibson’s pre-World-War-II ES-300 may be less popular today than the ES-250, but in terms of sheer numbers, it was Gibson’s most popular 17″ pre-war electric, despite the adverse context of the early 1940s. Truth is, most of the more-prominent guitarists of the period continued to favor installing an old-style bar pickup […]

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Ro-Pat-In Electric Spanish

Granddaddy to the Stars!

The story of George Beauchamp’s invention of what would become the first commercially successful electric guitar is shrouded in the mist of murky memory. But one critical element of the story – the first Spanish-neck electric guitar sold by Ro-Pat-In – has recently become more clear. (more…)

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Gibson ES-300 Prototype

Les Paul and the First Gibson ES-300

All images from the Lynn Wheelwright archive. When a guitar junkie hears the words “soapbar” and “P-90,” the mental image is usually that of a cream-colored rectangle seated deep in a sea of metallic gold, accentuating the curves of one of the most (more…)

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Stromberg Electro


Mid-’30s Stromberg/Kay Del Oro, with “resonator” containing the Stromberg electro unit. Without specifically mentioning it, an intriguing headline in The Mustic Trades, dated October 20, 1928, heralded the launch of the first commercially manufactured electric guitar. At the time, the use (more…)

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Alvino Rey’s “Mini” Gibsons


Alvino Rey’s 1936 Gibson mini guitar. From (more…)

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