C. F. Martin Style 2 Soprano Ukulele , c. 1920

C. F. Martin  Style 2 Soprano Ukulele ,  c. 1920
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Item # 9841
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C. F. Martin Style 2 Model Soprano Ukulele, c. 1920, made in Nazareth, PA, dark mahogany finish, mahogany body and neck, rosewood fingerboard, black rigid foam case.

This is a superb example of an early Martin Style 2 ukulele made in the 1919-1922 period. Although by Martin standards these were a fairly inexpensive instrument (originally retailing in the $20.00+ range), they were rather pricey compared to other maker's ukes, even the fancy Hawaiian styles. These early Martins are built to the company's highest 1920s standard; at the time and even now 100 years on they are considered easily amongst the best ukuleles ever manufactured.

The Style 2 was Martin's mid-line ukulele design with a dark natural mahogany finish offset with 3-ply white celluloid binding around the top and a single ply on the back. There is a discreet wooden sound hole ring ornament and 4 tiny position dots on the fingerboard, a feature added in 1918. This early model retains the maple nut and saddle of the first Martin ukes, replaced not long after with ebony. The finish is very thin dark mahogany varnish overall.

The tuners are the typical wooden violin-style pegs of the period; these are a complete original set which can be hard to find nowadays. This uke plays perfectly and has a powerful and beautiful tone. The Style 2 was built in rather smaller numbers than the more basic Style 1, and is a rarer find today. This is as nice as we have had in some time, a lovely 100 year old piece of Martin history and a superb player's instrument.
 
Overall length is 20 3/4 in. (52.7 cm.), 6 1/4 in. (15.9 cm.) wide at lower bout, and 2 5/16 in. (5.9 cm.) in depth at side, taken at the end block. Scale length is 13 5/8 in. (346 mm.). Width of nut is 1 3/8 in. (35 mm.).

This just-around 100 year old ukulele shows some light playing wear but shows no repairs and has survived in superb playing condition. It remains all original with no cracks or heavy wear, just some small dings overall and one spot of strumming wear to the top on the upper treble quarter. This uke plays perfectly and sounds simply swell, as they would have said when it was new. We have never heard better-sounding ukuleles than these early Martins, regardless of style, and this one is no exception. A lovely nstrument and a testament to just how well C.F. Martin & Co. built everything they put their name on. Excellent Condition.