Everyone A Gibsonite

Promotional photo for 1921 Gibson Mandolin Company "Catalog M". Ivers Mandolin Orchestra/Adams Plectrum Society, Adams, Massechusetts.

Members I can identify: Center Middle Row: Joseph Ivers, Orchestra leader, Gibson Mandolin Company Agent,and my Great Grandfather, Center Left Holding a Gibson F-4 Mary Ivers-Bassette, my Great Grandmother, Back Row from left: Leonore Ivers-Carmel, my Great Aunt, George Ivers, my Grandfather, Sitting in front, white dress, Doris Ivers-Hueston, my Great Aunt.

Page 21 Gibson Mandolin Catalog M: See right side second photo from bottom

Page 21 Gibson Mandolin Catalog M: See right side second photo from bottom
I recently discovered that this photo of my Great grandfather's Mandolin Orchestra appears on page 21 of the Gibson "M" catalog, published in 1921, confirming my theory that he (Joseph L. Ivers) was a Gibson "teacher-agent" or dealer, and that this photo was part of the "Everyone a Gibsonite" marketing campaign. Some of these instruments are still owned and played by Ivers family members. For example, my father Robert Ivers still plays the 1914 F4 in the center played by my Great Grandmother Mary Ivers in this photo. He also owns a 1921 H2 Mandola, no doubt pictured brand spanking new somewhere in this photo. I would love to try to contact other family members to see where some of these other instruments ended up.

Water Color "Grandfather's Mandolin" by Robert Ivers of Gibson F-4 #24532

Water Color "Grandfather's Mandolin" by Robert Ivers of Gibson F-4 #24532
Water Color Of My Great Grand Father's F4 painted by my Father, Robert Ivers. Look !!!!!!! Notice unintended ghost image of my Great Grandfather Joseph Ivers in upper left !

Monday, December 29, 2014

Archival References To J L Ivers' Mandolin Orchestra activities from The North Adams Transcript

I came across a few old newspaper stories from the North Adams Transcript that provide interesting details about my great grandfather JL Ivers, in general, and specifically about his mandolin orchestra activities. It's my firm belief, that J L Ivers was above all a business man, and much of his mandolin orchestra leadership, and music teaching efforts were motivated by his desire to move or sell Gibson Mandolin and Guitar Company Instruments. Its pretty clear that Gibson saw music teachers and orchestra leaders as an important part of their marketing and sales strategy in the teens and into the early 20's. The articles I'm posting here are all from the late teens into the late 1920s from the North Adams Transcript, which was the paper of record in Adams Massachusetts where my great grandfather was a plant supervisor at the Renfrew Textile Manufacturing Company.

He seems to have been very active in the community, organizing baseball and bowling leagues, in addition to all of his music teaching, performing, and orchestra leadership.

This first clip is a reference to my great grandfather's appointment to a new position at the Renfrew Manufacturing company. The clip is from 1919, and he had just moved from Lawrence, Mass. where he also had been a mill supervisor.

There are Gibson mandolins that we know were owned by J L Ivers dating as far back as 1914, so it's possible he had a relationship with Gibson and may have organized orchestras in Lawrence too, before he moved to Adams and took this position in 1919.  

The next clip is a reference to joint venture if you will, between my great grandfather and the YMCA to promote a "musical organization" Most likely a teaching effort, to build a student base, and of course sell more instruments! 

I'll post more of these in the future, 

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