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Guitars

Guitars have their roots in the stringed instruments of the ancient Egyptians and Mesopotamians as well as the ancient central Asian instruments that ranged from three to five strings. The four-course string guitar with four pairs of strings, or eight strings total, became popular in most of Europe by the Renaissance. The five-course string chitarra and the first music written for guitar appeared in Spain in the 1500s. Six courses of strings appeared on the guitarra battente of Italy in the 1600s, and this instrument was subsequently altered to use six single strings.

The modern classical guitar was developed by Spanish guitarmaker Antonio Torres around 1850. Guitar size and shape has not changed since Torres' innovations. The arch-top guitar was introduced by Orville Gibson in 1894. Steel strings for guitars became available to the public around 1900. The electric guitar was introduced in the '20s in response to the popularity of Hawaiian music. The solid-body electric guitar was developed in the late '30s and '40s.

The value of a vintage guitar is determined by several factors. Condition dictates value, with guitars in excellent condition commanding the highest prices. Value drops off steeply for guitars in good or fair condition. Rarity also factors into value, as does age. For some guitar models, however, the year they were made can reduce the value. Provenance also factors in to the value of vintage guitars. A guitar played by a famous musician or one that has historical importance will sell for a much higher price than a guitar of the same model without provenance.


Quick Facts

  • Kent was an importer of guitars in the United States during the '60s. Collectors find Kent guitars to be an affordable way to acquire classic '60s instruments
  • A man in Missouri currently owns a personal collection of over 3,000 guitars, banjos, ukuleles, zithers, and other similar instruments. The man's collection was featured on an episode of "Billy Connolly's Route 66"
  • Guitars owned or played by famed guitar player Eric Clapton are highly desired by collectors. Clapton's Fender Stratocaster Blackie guitar is currently valued at $959,500

Recommended Items at Auction

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FENDER VILLAGER 12 STRING ACOUSTIC GUITAR
Oct 30, 3:00 PM PDT
FENDER VILLAGER 12 STRING ACOUSTIC GUITAR
by Sunset Auction
Est: $0- $0
$32020 Bids
1965 Gretsch Corvette Electric Guitar
Oct 29, 9:30 AM EDT
1965 Gretsch Corvette Electric Guitar
by Merrill's Auctioneers & Appraisers
Est: $500- $800
$5507 Bids
An Acoustic Guitar Model "Presentation" Made by La Patrie of Quebec Canada & Hard Case
Oct 31, 11:00 AM AEDT
An Acoustic Guitar Model "Presentation" Made by La Patrie of Quebec Canada & Hard Case
by Theodore Bruce
Est: AUD100- AUD150
AUD2107 Bids
1910 Washburn Parlor Guitar
Oct 29, 9:30 AM EDT
1910 Washburn Parlor Guitar
by Merrill's Auctioneers & Appraisers
Est: $4,000- $6,000
$1,3004 Bids
C F Martin/ Oliver Ditson Parlor Guitar
Oct 29, 9:30 AM EDT
C F Martin/ Oliver Ditson Parlor Guitar
by Merrill's Auctioneers & Appraisers
Est: $3,000- $5,000
$9504 Bids
SPANISH CLASSICAL GUITAR, MANUEL RODRIGUEZ, 1964
Oct 26, 10:00 AM EDT
SPANISH CLASSICAL GUITAR, MANUEL RODRIGUEZ, 1964
by Everard Auctions and Appraisals
Est: $2,000- $3,000
$1,4003 Bids
YAMAHA FG-375 SII ROSEWOOD ACOUSTIC GUITAR
Oct 26, 10:00 AM EDT
YAMAHA FG-375 SII ROSEWOOD ACOUSTIC GUITAR
by Everard Auctions and Appraisals
Est: $200- $300
$1751 Bid
Small Wooden Guitar
Oct 26, 2:00 PM EDT
Small Wooden Guitar
by Wehrly's Auction Service
Est: $0- $0
$21 Bid
Fender 12 String Electric XII Guitar
Nov 20, 10:00 AM CST
Fender 12 String Electric XII Guitar
by Donley Auction Services
Est: $2,000- $5,000
$1,0001 Bid
Jose Luis Sanchez Acoustic 5 String Guitar W/ Case
Oct 30, 10:00 AM MST
Jose Luis Sanchez Acoustic 5 String Guitar W/ Case
by EJ'S Auction & Appraisal
Est: $0- $0
$101 Bid
Yamaha G-231 guitar
Oct 29, 9:00 AM EDT
Yamaha G-231 guitar
by Pook & Pook, Inc.
Est: $80- $120
$401 Bid
Epiphone Les Paul Jr. Electric Guitar (L: 103cm)
Oct 28, 10:00 AM AEDT
Epiphone Les Paul Jr. Electric Guitar (L: 103cm)
by Lawsons
Est: AUD150- AUD250
AUD701 Bid
FENDER ACOUSTIC 6 STRING GUITAR CD-60SCE
Nov 10, 9:00 AM EST
FENDER ACOUSTIC 6 STRING GUITAR CD-60SCE
by Affiliated Auctions & Realty LLC
Est: $150- $250
$400 Bids
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6 Italian Mosaic Guitar Pins
Nov 03, 10:00 AM EDT
6 Italian Mosaic Guitar Pins
by Barry S. Slosberg Inc
Est: $125- $200
$500 Bids
Large Bronze Figure of Seated Girl Playing Guitar
Nov 07, 10:00 AM EDT
Large Bronze Figure of Seated Girl Playing Guitar
by World Auction Gallery
Est: $200- $300
$1000 Bids
Antonio Ariza Classical Guitar- as found
Oct 29, 9:30 AM EDT
Antonio Ariza Classical Guitar- as found
by Merrill's Auctioneers & Appraisers
Est: $200- $300
$1000 Bids
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Vintage Hofner 4 String Electric Bass English
Nov 07, 10:00 AM EDT
Vintage Hofner 4 String Electric Bass English
by Clarke Auction Gallery
Est: $300- $500
$2000 Bids
Vintage Fender Squier Stratocaster Guitar
Dec 03, 1:00 PM EST
Vintage Fender Squier Stratocaster Guitar
by Mebane Antique Auction
Est: $100- $10,000
$500 Bids

Sellers Who Sell Guitars


Merrill's Auctioneers & Appraisers

Merrill's Auctioneers & Appraisers

Nadeau's Auction Gallery

Nadeau's Auction Gallery

Sunset Auction

Sunset Auction