Saxophone Forum


by historicsaxwhisperer
(614 posts)
1 month ago

1942 WWII King Zephyr Baritone with non period engraving

I am working on a 1942, 264262 serial number, King Zephyr Baritone. A very early 1942 horn. Very rare in that production of new instruments was halted in May 1942  It has the double socket neck, three ring strap hook assembly as the 1942 era horns had. I knew the original owner, who bought it new just prior to enlisting in the Marines at 17 in 1942. Smack in the middle of the goverment interfering in the use of various materials to make musical instrument grade brass. Luckily he made it home to his new horns and played them his entire life, literally  till he passed in 2019 at 93.

The bell engraving simply says KING and the H White company. The same stencil engraving seen on the older pre Voll True era horns. It comes with the stream line Baritone case that came out with the Zephyr. It is lacquered brass and original in every way. If you compare the Baritone bell sections of all the models up to this point, the museum here allows you to do that, they look to be unchanged in any way.

So I am wondering if anyone has knowledge of the King situation during the war. All the manufacturers numbers were way down during the war. Production was strictly monitored by the government. Brass alloys were directed by the supply and demand of war needs. King did make radar components during the war. Was it hard or impossible to get a new horn with the Zephyr engraving? Was it a cheaper option to get the basic engraving, since King probably had a supply ready to go, if someone wanted a new Bari or was this all that was allowed to be used?

This tab explains the war situation. 

 http://collections.nmmusd.org/News/Newsletter/August2010/WWII.html

Any input to this "oddity" would be appreciated.

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