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Images from The Cutler Gallery

Lyre-guitar by François Roudhloff, Paris, ca. 1810

NMM 3166. Lyre-guitar by François Roudhloff, 
Paris, ca. 1810

NMM 3166. Lyre-guitar by François Roudhloff, Paris, ca. 1810. With Classicism in vogue, lyre-guitars (six strings) were popular on the Continent early in the 19th century, built with a flat bottom so that they could serve, as well, as a piece of decorative art in one's den or parlor. This example was once owned by Lazinka Campbell, daughter of G. W. Campbell, a U.S. Congressman and Senator from Tennessee and Minister to Russia (Lazinka was born in St. Petersburg in 1820), who received it as a gift from a naval officer who brought it to her from South America. It was hidden in a stable loft in Nashville during the Civil War. Returning home after the War, Lazinka's son, George Campbell Brown, found the instrument and gave it to Fanny E. Bayless, a family friend, in 1866, a transaction scratched in script on the bottom of the base of the instrument. Brown later married somebody else, but Fanny kept the instrument. She preserved the story in a letter dated 1911, now in the Museum's archives, at which time she lived in Chicago. Purchase funds gift of Helen Beede Sill and Grace L. Beede, Capitola, California, 1982.

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