View Full Version : Old mandolin

Sep-22-2010, 2:49pm
First of all, hi! My name is Bob and I'm from the Netherlands. I play guitar and bouzouki.

A friend of mine found this mandolin. It should be from his great grandmother, so it is about 100 years old. I hope you can give me some information about it.
The only thing we found is the word Wilri or Milri on the top.
Here are two pictures:

EDIT: as you can see its pretty damaged, that is because the father of my friend used it as a boxing target haha.

Sep-22-2010, 3:03pm
Very typical of Germanic design, it seems to me. Presumably, "Wilri" is the name or brand of the maker.

Rob Giuffrida
Sep-22-2010, 3:55pm
Well you know the saying, "One man's boxing target is another man's next mandolin project," or something like that?

Anyways, welcome to the cafe!

Mandolin Mick
Sep-22-2010, 4:24pm
Looks like an Egmond ...

Sep-24-2010, 7:56am
Hi, thanks for your responses. Yeah I figured out myself that the brand name is Wilri hehe. It probably is German then, since it was Granny WŁts' mandolin lol. But anyone has information on when it was made or what it's worth or something?

@rob: I didn't know the saying, but it sounds awesome!

Sep-24-2010, 5:46pm
There are others here more well experienced in German mandolins than I, but I'll take a stab. If I were a betting man, I would guess assumedly pre-war, out of a shop in Markneukirchen, which has long been a center of German instrument making, stringed instruments, and others, of high quality and otherwise. Here is a link to the instrument museum there:


During the wave of early 20th C mandolin mania an Oder-full of this quality of mandolin were produced there (as was in Napoli, Chicago, Catania) with a melange of Italian mandolin style influences. Interest and production (albeit at a smaller scale) in bowlback mandolins has continue unabated in Europe relative to the USA, particularly in Germany. I do own a mandolin from MneuK and it is nicely made and serviceable but a few notches up the peg from this-but also shows a range of appropriated Italian styles. This one looks fairly generic to me, with probably a sound quality to match, though others' opinions may differ. What is it worth? In sale--probably next-to-nothing unfortunately. Lots of this ilk are regularly available for purchase on Ebay and probably in shops all over. Could be worth a whole lot more to string up and play, but I'm not talking value in monetary terms here. If you are looking to sell it: good luck. It you are looking to learn to play it: good luck. Oh, and please stick around and join the conversations here.