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Pianoforte-makers in Ireland

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Brand Image Info Addresses
SHADE Henry Pianoforte-maker and/or pianoforte dealer ca. 1835-49 1, Parliament Street (*1835)(*1842)(*1849), Dublin
SHERIDAN & BOSTON 'Piano-Forte-makers' ca. 1805-06 (2)  Dublin
SOLOMON George Pianoforte-maker and/or pianoforte dealer ca. 1842 49, Mary Street (*1842), Dublin
SOUTHWELL James 'Piano-Forte-maker' ca. 1827-46  

23, Stafford Street (*1827), 7, Peter's Row (*1830), 19, Low Camden Street (*1832), Camden Buildings (*1835),  Monk's Place, Phibsborough (*1846), Dublin


SOUTHWELL John 'Harpsichord and Piano-Forte-maker' and 'Music Seller' ca. 1804-35  

17, N. Earl Street (*1804), 34, Marlbo Street (*1815), 65, Erchequer Street (*1827), 127, Abbey Street (*1835), Dublin


SOUTHWELL Junior 'Piano-Forte-maker and Music Seller' ca. 1830 65, Exchequer Street (*1830), Dublin
SOUTHWELL Marcus 'Piano-Forte-maker' ca. 1842-50  

120, Abbey Street, Upper (*1842), 113, Upper Abbey Street, Middle (*1846)(*1847), 113, Middle Abbey Street (*1848), 11, Bachelor's Walk (*1849)(*1850), Dublin




(1756 - 1842)





Square pianoforte ca. 1785, Private Collection, London, England, U.K.
Square pianoforte ca. 1785, The Monart Collection, Wexford, Ireland, U.K.
Square pianoforte ca. 1785, The Cobbe Piano Collection, Surrey, England, U.K.

Square pianoforte ca. 1794, City of Dundee Art Galleries and Museums, Dundee, Scotland, U.K.

Square pianoforte ca. 1798, City of Dundee Art Galleries and Museums, Dundee, Scotland, U.K.
Square pianoforte ca. 1790 Pooya Radbon Collection, Allemagne
Square pianoforte ca. 1793-94, The Cobbe Piano Collection, Surrey, England, U.K.

Square pianoforte n 59 ca. 1799-1800, Bristol Strdivarium, Bristol, England, U.K.
Upright square Pianoforte n 59 [??] ca. 1799, The Mobbs Keyboard Collection, Golden Bay, New Zealand

Square pianoforte n 80 ca. 1800, Private Collection, London, England, U.K.
Square pianoforte ca. 1800, Present owners unknown
Square pianoforte ca. 1800, Richard Burnett, Finchcocks, Goudhurst, Kent, England, U.K.
Square pianoforte ca. 1807, Nordenfjeldske kunstindustrimuseum, Norway
Square pianoforte ca. 1825, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., U.S.

Patent of 1794 : "October 18, 1794. WILLIAM SOUTHWELL. Improved dampers, and addition of treble keys." The History of the Pianoforte: With an Account of the Theory of Sound & Also of the Music and Musical Instruments of the Ancients, Edgar Brinsmead, 1879, p. 197 (archive.org)

Patent of 1798 : "Nov. 8, 1798. William Southwell. New method of applying additional notes. The frame turns down over the keys, and the leader is fastened to the hammer by a joint of leather. A harp played with keys is also mentioned in the specification. " The History of the Pianoforte, Edgar Brinsmead, 1879, p. 197 (archive.org)

Patent of 1807 : "William Southwell, of the city of Dublin, musical instrument-maker; for certain improvements upon a piano-forte, which is so constructed as to prevent the possibility of its being so frequently out of tune, as piano-fortes now generally are, which he denominates a 'cabinet pianoforte.' Dated April 8, 1807." The Annual Register, Or, A View of the History, Politics, and Literature for ..., 1807, p. 856

Patent of 1811 : "William Southwell, Gresse-street, Rathbone place, Middlesex, piano-forte maker; for certain improvements in the construction of a piano-forte." The Literary Panorama, Volume 10, 1811, p. 1266 - or -  "Piano sloping backwards, with improved action and damper wire." The History of the Pianoforte, Edgard Brinsmead, 1879, p. 200 (archive.org)

Patent of 1821 : "William Southwell, of Gresse-street, Rathbone-place, for certain improvements on cabinet piano-fortes. April 5th." The London Magazine, Volume 3, 1821, p. 697 -or - "Check action applied to cabinet pianos, to prevent the hammer rebounding against the strings." The History of the Pianoforte, Edgar Brinsmead, 1879, p. 202 (archive.org)



'Harpsichord and Piano-Forte-maker' ca. 1782-1839

He made his first upright pianoforte in 1794. (1)

"The piano was introduced upon the stage in London as a newly invented instrument in 1767 by Dibdin, and in Dublin by Michael Arne in 1770. It had been customary thus to introduce keyed instruments into the theatrical orchestra. A picture of the performance at Versailles in honour of the marriage of Louis XVI. and Marie Antoinette shows thisthe harpsichord having the lid raised. Mozart did likewise at Milan in 1771, and even so lately as 1826 Weber "presided at the pianoforte," when Oberon was produced at Covent Garden, although, as that opera had no recitatives (being only "a drama with songs"), it is not very clear for what the instrument had been introduced. Some allusion having been made to the progress of the piano in Dublin with Panormo and Michael Arne, the (Sir R. Stewart) would refer to one well-known Irish artist, Wm. Southwell, who had rendered great services to the manufacture of the instrument, having improved the dampers, extended the compass, and invented the upright, then termed a "cabinet piano." The Monthly musical record, Volume 5, 1875, p. 74

SOUTHWELL W. & Co (*1814), 'Harpsichord and piano-forte-makers'


Patent of 1837 : "To William Southwell, of Winchester-road, Newroad, in the county of Middlesex, pianoforte-maker, for his invention of a certain improvement in pianofortes. [Sealed 24th August, 1837]
This improvement is in the construction of a part of the mechanism called the action of a pianoforte, by which the pressure exerted by the finger of the player upon the key, is communicated to the hammer that strikes the string and also to the damper which stops the vibrations. The improvement is the introduction of a small tong and spring in what is called the butt; it is designed to render the touch more delicate than in the ordinary construction, and, consequently, to facilitate the playing of rapid passages by ensuring the correct action of the hammer and damper. [Inrolled in the Inrolment Office, February, 1838.]" The London Journal of Arts and Sciences, and Repertory of Patent ..., Volume 14, William Newton, 1839, p. 6


  SOUTHWELL in London, England


WILLIAM SOUTHWELL, Inventor & Musical Instrument Maker, Michael Cole


86, Marlborough Street (*1800), 34, Marlbough Street (*1814)(*1815), Dublin


(*1800): 'Gentleman's and Citizen's Almanack', 1800, p. (Southwell) 98

(*1804): 'The Treble Almanack for the Year 1804', 1804, p. (Southwell) 89

(*1815): 'Treble Almanack for the Year of 1815, Dublin', 1815

(*1827): 'Gentleman's and Citizen's Almanack', 1827, p. 126

(*1830): 'Dublin Directory', 1830

(*1832): 'The Treble Almanack for the year 1832, Great Brittain & Ireland', 1832

(*1842): 'Gentleman's and Citizen's Almanack', 1842, p. 773-774

(*1846): 'Slater's National Commercial Directory of Ireland', 1846

(*1847): 'The Dublin almanac, and general register of Ireland, for 1847'

(*1848): 'Dublin Almanac and General Register of Ireland', 1848, p. 582

(*1849): 'The Dublin Almanac and General Register of Ireland', 1849, p. 910

(*1850): 'Thom's Directory of Ireland', 1850




(1): 'Histoire de piano de 1700 1950', Mario Pizzi, 1983

(2): 'Makers of the Piano 1700-1820' and 'Makers of the Piano 1820-1860', Martha Novak Clinkscale, 1993


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