The Banjo Conundrum
I collect ear trumpets

A common form is a 2 piece arrangement known as a 'banjo'. Read a Times article.

My collection includes 32 of this type of trumpet

I recently noted that several of the more basic models (ie not decorative or EPNS) bear the mark 'ENGLISH MADE'

My curiosity was aroused when photographing the lettering that they all have a similar imperfection suggesting a common manufacturer

I have researched catalogues and advertising to find that several suppliers actually show a banjo in their catalogue - Arnold, Bailey, Haertel, KWS, Lindsey, Maw, Reynolds, SMC, Stille

My proposal is that one company made the banjo for a variety of resellers and placed an additional suppliers label on the item for each retailer

I have Banjos of this type labelled Arnold, Bailey, BMW, Dowling, Fannin, Rein, and 3 more unbranded

And one unmarked looking exactly like SMC catalogue No 1365

Fanin and Bailey are very much distributors rather than makers

Can anyone offer any further light on the subject ?

Does anyone know when the marking ENGLISH MADE became common place ?

As far as I can find out ENGLAND started to appear on goods in 1891 and MADE IN ENGLAND in 1921

lists 2 by Hawksley but they do not seem to show the 'ENGLISH MADE' mark, however the one anotated 'Telescopic Brass/Copper Hearing Trumpet' is indeed marked 'ENGLISH MADE'.

Phisick also lists a banjo marked 'BRITISH MADE'
The country marking with distinct loss of beginning of the word ENGLISH

Shows the location of the marking

Stem branding Rein

Stem branding Arnold

Stem branding Fannin

Relevant to the Banjo is this poorly restored grossly over-cleaned Ebay example, which has a flat 'bottom', I have not seen this elsewhere.

Further still the item had an unusual decoration around the bowl - I would have paid twice the final price if it had not been cleaned so badly, and whoever repaired it put the tube upside down !

PowerHouse Museum has a banjo with no maker name but shows mark ENGLISH MADE

George Marshall Medical Museum has a banjo with branding T HAWKSLEY OXFORD ST LONDON and ENGLISH MADE

Ebay listed a banjo in 2019 with marking ENGLISH MADE and with a badly rubbed Hawksley escutcheon :

Ebay listed a banjo in 2018 with the marking ENGLISH MADE WARRENTED (yes spelled wrong)
Occasionally trumpets turn up labelled WARRENTED without a Hawksley label.

Banjos in my collection range from 215 to 538 mm long (extended) and bowls range 54 - 137mm

NB Banjo based on the invention by A Politzer 1835-1920 (Vienna) 1883

page 195 from SMC catalogue 7th edition idated at 1928 - earliest one shown in my Stille catalog 1901

Ear Trumpets, the Packington Collection
SY10, Shropshire, UK