Minstrel Banjo

For enthusiasts of early banjo

I play an 1852 minstrel at the Columbia Diggin's each year in Columbia SHP, California. This tin type was done in the field by Will Dunniway using the authentic camera, tin plate and developing procedures of the period.

Views: 238

Comment by Strumelia on April 5, 2014 at 9:44am

This is really nice.    :)

Comment by John Salicco on April 5, 2014 at 10:01am

Thanks.  It is perhaps my favorite portrait.

Comment by John Salicco on April 6, 2014 at 7:27pm

Amusing what Photoshop can do, but offensive on a couple levels.  I would ask respectfully that this re-touched photo be taken down ASAP.

Not all "minstrels" did blackface.  Many solo performers did not.  I represent one of those who did not.  Both Mart Taylor and John Stone (Old Put) during the 1850s in the California gold country did not do black face. I have portrayed each of these performers in the past and, for the record, I refuse to do blackface.

Comment by Carl Anderton on April 6, 2014 at 9:51pm

Great image, John, I thought it was an original at first.  I don't know what Dan'l was thinking by retouching your image in such an inappropriate and offensive manner, but rest assured the rank and file here don't find it amusing at all.

Comment by John Salicco on April 6, 2014 at 10:21pm

I appreciate that and will chalk it up to a momentary, if somewhat extreme, lack of judgment.

Comment by Strumelia on April 7, 2014 at 11:11am

John can you tell us about the banjo?  The pot must be 13-14", correct?  Who made it, etc?

Comment by John Salicco on April 7, 2014 at 12:23pm

It is one of my 14" minstrel banjos.  It has a maple neck and a rosewood finger board.  The face is deer rawhide.  It has inlayed stars on the peg head and saddle which are washed out in the ferrotype,

but I have a picture of it in my gallery at https://www.banjofactory.com/Gallery.html if you want to see a color version.  This is also the banjo featured as my background photo on my web site.

Comment by Tim Twiss on April 7, 2014 at 12:31pm

John, I just went to your site. I did not realize the extent of your involvement in early banjo. Glad you landed to share.

Comment by Strumelia on April 7, 2014 at 12:36pm

Yes, cool site and some nice looking banjos there John.

Comment by Leonidas (Lee) Jones on April 7, 2014 at 12:46pm
For those who already have banjo's, John makes outstanding cases. custom fitted.


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