View Full Version : “Bill Monroe” Gibson

Mar-03-2009, 4:06pm
What’s the story with this “Bill Monroe” Gibson?

http://cgi.ebay.com/Gibson-Bill-Monroe-Prototype-A-Mandolin-with-OHSC_W0QQitemZ190290420717QQihZ009QQcategoryZ10179 QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

It has all the classics of a scam….” 5 prototypes had been lost in the move from Montana to Nashville”… “this one looks like it really was a "finish experiment"”…and my favorite…” I had Frank Ford look at it, and Frank got some glue in there just in case”.
Just a scam or does the wacky story have legs?

David Crummey
Mar-03-2009, 4:56pm
Hello Rigel 42

It was not the 5 prototypes that were lost, it was Gibson's records of the prototypes that was lost. Gruhn's had contacted Gibson to see what they could find out about the prototypes when they had one of them on consignment and were given that information. And as I mentioned in the ad there is a copy of a letter from Charlie Derrington stating that they were "finish experiments." So, I guess technically there were 205 Gibson Bill Monroe models made. The prototypes are (and were) alive an well. If you happen to be in the neighborhood of Weaverville CA let me know and I'll invite you over to sample two of them. -David

Mar-03-2009, 5:33pm
Thanks for your input Dave :) Unfortunately it’s out of my price range, but hopefully we can get a good discussion rolling and drum up some interests. A Bizarre and interesting story.

Mar-03-2009, 6:16pm
These are for real. I know of a collector on the East Coast that has the Monroe "C" prototype. Gibson loosing records? They've been doing that since the 20's. Heck they can't even date a guitar from 1968.

Mar-08-2009, 11:22am
Hi David,

I don't intend to hijack this thread but wanted to say hello. A few years ago, you and I traded your '56 F-12 for my Weber Yellowstone mandola. I still have your F-12 and had Randy Wood revoice it last year. It came out very nicely and think that you would want it back if it were available. Sorry, it's not available and I like it very much. I don't know if you still have the mandola but I think I saw it in pictures from a mando tasting a couple of years ago. At any rate, I hope you are doing well and I hope to make it to one of the NoCal mando tasting events or to Mando Symposium someday.

Be well,
Len B.
(now living in Clearwater, FL)

David Newton
Mar-11-2009, 2:03pm
Hi David,
What's up in gold country?

Charles Johnson
May-02-2009, 3:51pm
The prototypes are legit. I have sold a couple of them over the years.

Best regards
Charles Johnson
Mandolin World Headquarters, Inc.

May-03-2009, 12:25pm
Just to get it into the record, there are a couple Monroes with Red Spruce tops out there....

I think they came late in the run, but I definitely remember sending 2 tops to Gibson back then, and that they did make it into that run....

Whether they were labeled as such, I have no idea....