S.S. Stewart was a banjo producer in the late 1800's and was one of the
first to apply mass-production techniques to instrument building with
amazing results. Stewart became partners with well-known guitar
builder George Bauer, and issued guitars under the Stewart & Bauer
trademark of Philadelphia.
The Stewart name also appeared on a series of guitars built in the 1950's
distributed by Harmony. This S.S. Stewart single pickup model is nearly
identical to the Kay 141 model that appeared in the 1954 Kay catalog...
Nearly 5 years after the 1st S.S. Stewart was produced for Harmony/Kay
Think of these early S.S. Stewart guitars as being the prototype and
predecessor to the legendary Harmony "Stratotone" and also helped to inspire
the early Fender models. The first time I heard a 1950's S.S.
Stewart was when Tom Waits pulled one of these babies out on-stage... the
blues musicians in the audience almost crapped their pants.
This 1952 S.S. Stewart comes equipped with a very powerful single
pick-up, Bakelite trim, Rosewood fingerboard/bridge, compensating
tailpiece and that unmistakable vintage tone. More than the tone, the
thin-body is easy-to-handle and is light... weighing-in at 5lb.5oz. It's
also designed with a smooth cutaway style for easy fingering down to the last
fret. The toggle switch permits quick change from bass tone for rhythm
and treble for solo work.