Besson Prototype. 100 year old cornet. Can anyone help??

Discussion in 'Horns' started by jo-rae-me, Apr 9, 2004.

  1. jo-rae-me

    jo-rae-me New Friend

    Apr 9, 2004
    Gidday from Down under!
    I currently own a Besson Prototype cornet. I have been told it is a presetation model and is very rare. I wanted to sell it a couple of months ago, and was offered an amazing amount of money to take it off ebay. I went to the museum in question expecting a cheque, but was told it had to go through some board, and have to be approved...blah blah blah. You know the story. So I ended up with no cornet, and no money. A month later...still nothing. So I got my cornet back with much apologies on their part. Well, I think I might put it back up for sale again. I'll describe it to the best of my ability. I dont actually have it in front of me to write down whats on the bell.
    Besson Prototype made in England. FB (Fontaine Besson) Brevette on the valves. 50 medals of honour.etc... There is extensive floral engraving all the way from the bell to around the bell bow. Ive only ever seen the engraving go from bell to the valve body usually, but this one is different. Key changing cornet. Has extra crooks for the keys of A, Ab, B, Bb.
    I have a photocopy of a page from a book listing this as the fourth prototype made. (The museum gave me that). They said it is not a compensating horn. That was the one after mine.
    As to being a presentation has the name J.C.Murphy very fancilly written in the floral embellishment on the bell. Very fancy.
    The cornet is silver, and comes with 3 lead pipes, 2 mouthpieces (1 has prototype and soprano...ish)..and the original leather coffin case. (Even has the origianal besson label with their address.)
    The cornet plays as it is. All slides and valves move.
    So, its completely original. was made in 1904! So happy 100th birthday!
    My questions are....does any one have any further information on Bessons built in England at the turn of the century?
    Do you know about these special presentation models?
    Were they given to competitors in solo competitions?
    If you have any info, any thing, please pass it on to me.
    I would love to see this ...not sitting in a museum, but in someones collection, who will pick it up, and use it occassionally like I have done. Someone that will really care about it. It would be a shame to "Retire" it. If you know what I mean.
    Anyway, any info would be greatfully accepted.
  2. alanbach

    alanbach Pianissimo User

    Dec 10, 2003
    South Wales U.K.

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