FIG. 4.  BROADWOOD.

FIG. 4.--BROADWOOD.

I have not had time to refer other than incidentally to the square pianoforte, which has become obsolete. I must, however, give a separate historical sketch of the upright pianoforte, which has risen into great favor and importance, and in its development--I may say its invention--belongs to this present 19th century. The form has always recommended the upright on the score of convenience, but it was long before it occurred to any one to make an upright key board instrument reasonably. Upright harpsichords were made nearly four hundred years ago. A very interesting 17th century one was sold lately in the great Hamilton sale--sold, I grieve to say, to be demolished for its paintings. But all vertical harpsichords were horizontal ones, put on end on a frame; and the book-case upright grand pianos, which, from the eighties, were made right into the present century, were horizontal grands similarly elevated. The real inventor of the upright piano, in its modern and useful form, was that remarkable Englishman, John Isaac Hawkins, the inventor of ever-pointed pencils; a civil engineer, poet, preacher, and phrenologist.

While living at Border Town, New Jersey, U. S. A., Hawkins invented the cottage piano--portable grand, he called it--and his father, Isaac Hawkins, to whom, in Grove's "Dictionary," I have attributed the invention, took out, in the year 1800[1], the English patent for it. I can fortunately show you one of these original pianinos, which belongs to Messrs. Broadwood. It is a wreck, but you will discern that the strings descend nearly to the floor, while the key-board, a folding one, is raised to a convenient height between the floor and the upper extremities of the strings. Hawkins had an iron frame and tension rods, within which the belly was entirely suspended; a system of tuning by mechanical screws; an upper metal bridge; equal length of string throughout; metal supports to the action, in which a later help to the repetition was anticipated--the whole instrument being independent of the case. Hawkins tried also a lately revived notion of coiled strings in the bass, doing away with tension. Lastly, he sought for a sostinente, which has been tried for from generation to generation, always to fail, but which, even if it does succeed, will produce another kind of instrument, not a pianoforte, which owes so much of its charm to its unsatiating, evanescent tone.

[Transcribers note 1: 3rd digit illegible, best guess from context.]

Fig. 5.  MEYER.

Fig. 5.--MEYER.

Once introduced into Hawkins' native country, England, the rise of the upright piano became rapid. In 1807, at latest, the now obsolete high cabinet piano was fairly launched. In 1811, Wornum produced a diagonal. In 1813, a vertical cottage piano. Previously, essays had been made to place a square piano upright on its side, for which Southwell, an Irish maker, took out a patent in 1798; and I can fortunately show you one of these instruments, kindly lent for this paper by Mr. Walter Gilbey. I have also been favored with photographs by Mr. Simpson, of Dundee, of a precisely similar upright square. I show his drawing of the action--the Southwell sticker action. W. F. Collard patented another similar experiment in 1811. At first the sticker action with a leather hinge to the hammer-butt was the favorite, and lasted long in England. The French, however, were quick to recognize the greater merit of Wornum's principle of the crank action, which, and strangely enough through France, has become very generally adopted in England, as well as Germany and elsewhere. I regret I am unable to show a model of the original crank action, but Mr. Wornum has favored me with an early engraving of his father's invention.

It was originally intended for the high cabinet piano, and a patent was taken out for it in 1826. But many difficulties arose, and it was not until 1829 that the first cabinet was so finished. Wornum then applied it in the same year to the small upright--the piccolo, as he called it--the principle of which was, through Pleyel and Pape, adopted for the piano manufacture in Paris. Within the last few years we have seen the general introduction of Bord's little pianino, called in England, ungrammatically enough, pianette, in the action of which that maker cleverly introduced the spiral spring. And, also, of those large German overstrung and double overstrung upright pianos, which, originally derived from America, have so far met with favor and sale in this country as to induce some English makers, at least in the principle, to copy them.

Fig. 6.  STEINWAY.

Fig. 6.--STEINWAY.

I will conclude this historical sketch by remarking, and as a remarkable historical fact, that the English firms which in the last century introduced the pianoforte, to whose honorable exertions we owe a debt of gratitude, with the exception of Stodart, still exist, and are in the front rank of the world's competition. I will name Broadwood (whose flag I serve under), Collard (in the last years of the last century known as Longman and Clementi), Erard (the London branch), Kirkman, and, I believe, Wornum. On the Continent there is the Paris Erard house; and, at Vienna, Streicher, a firm which descends directly from Stein of Augsburg, the inventor of the German pianoforte, the favorite of Mozart, and of Beethoven in his virtuoso period, for he used Stein's grands at Bonn. Distinguished names have risen in the present century, some of whom have been referred to. To those already mentioned, I should like to add the names of Hopkinson and Brinsmead in England; Bechstein and Bluthner in Germany; all well-known makers.