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date: 01 June 2020

Browne, J(ohn) F(ace)locked

  • Nancy Groce


(b London, c1815; fl New York, c1843–1872). American harp maker and dealer of English birth. He probably immigrated to New York in the late 1830s. Before leaving London, he trained at Érard’s harp shop, where according to his 1846 advertisement in the New York directory, he was granted a “Royal Letter of Patent” for his work. Although he claimed to have established a New York shop as early as 1841, no record of his firm has been found before 1843, when he was listed in the city directory as a “harp mauf” at 385 Broadway.

In 1844, Browne formed a short-lived partnership with the harp maker James Delveau. In an 1844 advertisement, Delveau & Browne advertised themselves as “Manufacturers of Improved Double-Action Harps … J.F. Browne respectfully informs his Friends in the Musical World that he has established himself in New York, for the manufacture and importing of these very beautiful instruments. His arrangements are such as to enable him to transact business at European prices, thereby saving the purchasers the high duties imposed by Tariff on these Instruments … Particular care is taken to fit them for the extremes of climate in this country … Prices $500–$750” (Bella C. Landauer Collection of Business and Advertising Ephemera, ...

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