Sousaphone. Nominal pitch: 18-ft B♭.
MakerBoosey & Co
Place MadeUnited Kingdom; London; England; Europe
DescriptionTechnical description: Silver-plated brass. The nominal 24-inch bell is actually close to 22-inch diameter. The detachable bell is secured by a single ligature tension wing screw. With three-part adjustable mouthpipe, two of the joints secured by ligature screw; With a broad shouder rest; water-key on the main tuning-slide; fitting for music-card holder on largest (angled) part of the mouthpipe. Valve type: 3 Périnet type valves, bottom-sprung; alignment by key on piston engaging with channel in casing interior. Repair History: Although built at International Pitch, the main tuning-slide was lengthened 3 inches by the manufacturers 2 May 1929. The water-key on the 3rd valve loop had been removed and its hole blocked; it was replaced in 2022 by a water-key from a Boosey bombardon.
Other InformationSpecific usage history: Played by Frank Tomes in Bob Kerr's Whoopee Band.
NotesArnold Myers (inscription) 9.7.01; (measurements) 23.4.22; (description) 24.11.22.
Measurementsfrom top of bell to bottom of bow 1380; bell 557.
ProvenanceEx- Frank Tomes collection 81.; Bought 1984/Nov/20 from Christies, lot 16 for Â£194.00.Story: One of the earliest British-made sousaphones: in the mid-1920s Boosey marketed them as 'Imperialphones'. Sousaphones with compensating valves were made for a short time only. This instrument was presented to the officers of the 17th/21st Lancers (the cavalry regiment known as the 'Death or Glory Boys') in 1927. Frank Tomes bought it at a Christies auction in 1984, then played it professionally in Bob Kerr's Whoopee Band.; on loan to the Collection.