Sign up for our mailing list to receive daily inventory updates and news from Gruhn Guitars


THE Source for the Vintage Instrument World

Featured Inventory Archives 1999-2012

Gruhn Guitars Lange 5-string banjo

Lange 5-string, circa 1910

William Lange is best known for the Paramount-brand tenor banjos of the 1920s, but he and William Rettberg (his partner until 1921) got into the banjo business back in 1897, at the height of five-string era, when they purchased the New York-based Buckbee company.

This unusual Lange (unlabeled) five-string (inv.#JA2697) dates from around 1910. The open-back rim is metal-clad, typical of high-end classic banjos, but it is fitted with a metal, bowl-shaped tone ring. A hole in the head allows the sound to resonate forward. The head diameter is 12". The neck heel carving is similar to that of an Orpheum (a Rettberg and Lange brand) of the same period.

This presentation instrument is in excellent condition and, with hard case, is priced at $3000.

This instrument is SOLD

For further enjoyment...

Back view

Close of body

End of fingerboard

Neck heel

Arm rest

Inside of rim



Back of peghead