Re: An old mandolin I'd like to know more about.
Definitely Italian to my eye. A number of distinct clues: the very thin fretboard with end contoured around the sound hole. The case is also of the type common to Italian mandolins sold in export to the UK. Also the tailpiece, which sometimes does show up on early east-coast US bowl backs is most typical of Italian models. Lastly the top is almost finish-free. Yes, it could have worn all off evenly, but that is highly unlikely. These mid range Italian bowls had little if any finish on their tops.
Is the bridge missing? Some side views should reveal the condition of the neck and hence its playability.
Count me in on with the "edit the toes out" advocates.
Ever tried, ever failed, no matter. Try again, fail again, fail better.--Samuel Beckett