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Steinway Pianos

Steinway & Sons was founded by Heinrich Engelhard Steinweg in 1853 in Manhattan, New York. Steinweg was a piano maker from Seesen, Germany who immigrated with his family to the United States in 1850. When Steinweg opened his company, the family decided to change their name to Steinway. They sold their first piano, serial number 483 to the Griswold family for $500.

Steinway & Sons continues to produce pianos today. The company holds 126 patents in piano making and produces pianos from their factories in Queens, New York and Hamburg, Germany. Steinway brand pianos are considered the top of the line and are among the most highly regarded piano brands in the world. Steinway also manufactures the Boston line of pianos at mid-range prices and the Essex line at lower-range prices. Steinway's parent company, Steinway Musical Instruments, was acquired by Paulson & Co. in 2013.

Identifying a vintage Steinway piano is fairly easy for collectors. Steinway places serial numbers on all of its pianos. They are located on the cast-iron plate between the tuning pins and above the keyboard on grand pianos or on top of the cast-iron plate when the lid is opened on upright pianos. Researching the serial number helps collectors identify the piano.


Quick Facts

  • Steinway serial numbers have been recorded at the Steinway factory since 1853 and are kept in leather-bound books in the company archives. If a piano cannot be identified by regular means, a collector can contact the factory and request information
  • In 2015, Steinway unveiled its 600,000th piano. The piano took four years and 6,000 hours to complete. Its features include Macassar ebony and the Fibonacci spiral. This piano was priced at $2.4 million
  • John Lennon collaborated with Steinway to produce the Model Z piano, a simple upright piano made of walnut. The Model Z piano was sold to British recording artist George Michael for $2.37 million

Recommended Items at Auction

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Sellers Who Sell Steinway Pianos


EJ'S Auction & Appraisal

EJ'S Auction & Appraisal

Locati LLC

Locati LLC