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Original Civil War Fife, maker-marked (SOLD)

Out of Stock


Product Description

This is another nice item being offered, it is a Civil War era maker-marked Rosewood Fife. It measures 15 ½” long and has long German-silver ferrules on each end, typical of early production. It is signed Geo. Cloos / Crosby indicating Crosby model fife produced by George Cloos. The George Cloos Company produced piccolos, flutes, clarinets, and fifes, in a shop in Brooklyn, NY from 1862 until 1946. This specimen has slightly different size finger holes which also indicates early production.

During the Civil War fifers and drummers played only for their own companies when on detached duty or on a guard service, but would also entertain their comrades in the evening.

The Union and the Confederacy both had musicians assigned to their regiments; a typical company of 100 men would have one drummer and one fifer. Regimental or battalion levels had a fife and drum corps consisting of 10 fifers and 10 drummers drawn from each company by the Drum Major.

The Drum Major and Fife Major were noncommissioned officers who were responsible for selecting, training and organizing the corps. Field musicians were also used as stretcher bearers as well as aides to the medical staff. In my recent book "The Civil War Soldier - His Personal Items", I have one of these fifes pictured and I go into more detail about the importance of music to the Civil War soldier. In the Gettysburg Museum there is also an example of this fife (see pictures).

This fife is in very nice condition with the beautiful original patina with no cracks. Hard to find these unique maker-marked musical instruments in this condition.

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$6.50 (Fixed shipping cost)