Martin Mandolin Serial Numbers | Date your Martin Mandolin

Martin Mandolin Serial Numbers | Date your Martin Mandolin

Year
Last Serial No.
1895 23
1896 112
1897 153
1898 359
1899 577
1900 800
1901 881
1902 1171
1903 1348
1904 1507
1905 1669
1906 2026
1907 2357
1908 2510
1909 2786
1910 3098
1911 3431
1912 3847
1913 4162
1914 4462
1915 4767
1916 5007
1917 5752
1918 6370
1919 7237
1920 8761
1921 9627
1922 10245
1923 11020
1924 11809
1925 12520
1926 13359
1927 13833
1928 14170
1929 14630
1930 14892
1931 15290
1932 15476
1933 15528
1934 15729
1935 15887
1936 16156
1937 16437
1938 16580
1939 16747
1940 16957
1941 17263
1942 17405
Year
Last Serial No.
1946 17641
1947 18303
1948 19078
1949 19559
1950 20065
1951 20496
1952 20902
1953 21452
1954 21952
1955 22254
1956 22629
1957 22985
1958 23111
1959 23262
1960 23512
1961 23663
1962 23938
1963 24139
1964 24339
1965 24439
1966 24564
1967 24639
1968 24839
1969 24989
1970 25039
1971 25139
1972 25239
1973 25339
1974 25679
1975 25895
1976 26070
1976 260020*
1977 26101
1979 26112
1980 26156
1981 26215
1982 26225
1983 26247
1984 26254
1985 26263
1986 26273
1987 26279
1988 26281
1989 26283
1990 26291
1991 26297
1991 509122**
1993 533213

1957 Gibson A5L Mandolin

gibson-a5lThere are very many styles of mandolins made by many manufacturers. But, typically referred to in the USA are those made by the Gibson Co..

Prior to about 1900, a typical mandolin was the Neapolitan style. The oldest instrument was made by the Vinaccia family of Naples, Italy around the mid-1700’s. This type of mandolin has a bowl-shaped back and a top from a flat piece of wood bent over a hot poker making a slight kink or ridge about where the bridge fits. This kink is important, and is what marks the advancement of luthiery ny the Neapolitans, because it strengthens the top enough to withstand higher tension strings.

Then around 1900, Orville Gibson of Michigan created two new styles of mandolins. Inspired by the way violins are made, he made his mandolins with a carved back (much flatter than the other bowl-back of the Neapolitans, but carved to shape) and, importantly, the top carved in an arched shape. The plainer of the two he called his “A” style – it has a simple round teardrop shape profile to the body and a plain peghead.

The 1957s were the first of the A5L Model, selling for around $3000.00.