Lives of the Pipers-pipemaker listings, N. America pre-1950

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nwhitmer
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Lives of the Pipers-pipemaker listings, N. America pre-1950

Post by nwhitmer »

I have started a new page on the Lives of the Pipers Website, a list or directory of pipemakers in North America before 1950.

At present there are listings for nine pipemakers. I'll add more as time permits. I'll post to this topic from time to time to let you know when new listings are available.

Michael Anderson 1865-1947
James E. Brennan 1879-1944
Patrick A. "Patsy" Brown 1872-1957
James Cahill c. 1847-1908
James Carbray 1860-1933
Michael Carney c. 1872-1938
Michael Carolan 1820?-1897?
Conner & Boyle active before 1925

This is a work in progress. And I am certainly open to new information about these men and the instruments they made.

Irish or Uilleann Bagpipe Makers, North America, Before 1950

and the home page: Lives of the Pipers

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Re: Lives of the Pipers-pipemaker listings, N. America pre-1

Post by Torrin Riáin »

Awesome! Thanks for keeping up on this fantastic resource, Nick. It's much appreciated.
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Re: Lives of the Pipers-pipemaker listings, N. America pre-1

Post by nwhitmer »

I have added four more entries to my page on pipemakers in North America.

Matthew Corcoran circa 1800-1885
James Early 1846-1914
Michael Egan d. circa 1860
Mr. Green active 20th century

This is a work in progress. I am certainly open to new information about these men and the instruments they made.

Irish or Uilleann Bagpipe Makers, North America, Before 1950

and the home page: Lives of the Pipers

Nick Whitmer
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Re: Lives of the Pipers-pipemaker listings, N. America pre-1

Post by Will Woodson »

Thanks for this, Nick! It's a hugely helpful resource and really interesting.
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Re: Lives of the Pipers-pipemaker listings, N. America pre-1

Post by nwhitmer »

I have added four more entries to my page on pipemakers in North America.

Crowley brothers active in NYC circa 1915-before 1950
Denis Harrington active in Cork City, Ireland 1850s, supposedly emigrated to US
Michael D. Henneberry Yonkers, NY
Patrick Hennelly Chicago, circa 1929-1976

Irish or Uilleann Bagpipe Makers, North America, Before 1950

and the home page: Lives of the Pipers

Nick Whitmer
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Re: Lives of the Pipers-pipemaker listings, N. America pre-1

Post by nwhitmer »

I have added three more entries to my page on pipemakers in North America.

Robert Hutton (1845-1930) Wilmington, DE, friend of the Taylor brothers.
Samuel Mack (1845-?) Lowell, MA
Charles O'Donnell (1854-1949) Indianapolis, IN

Irish or Uilleann Bagpipe Makers, North America, Before 1950

and the home page: Lives of the Pipers

Nick Whitmer
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Re: Lives of the Pipers-pipemaker listings, N. America pre-1

Post by cormacc »

Thanks Nick, very interesting resource to dip into. Re. the entry on Michael Andersen, you may be interested to see/hear an old clip of Eamonn Brophy playing a set of his manufacture here, around 30 minutes in.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ond4AhuN2LI

I believe that particular set used to belong to Jimmy Cagney, who besides his film work was apparently a competent dancer (?and piper?). As far as I remember, a relative of Jimmy's heard Eamonn busking in Dublin many years ago and arranged for him to get the set, which had presumably been sitting in an attic somewhere since his death. It's a lovely instrument.

Remember reading in the notes (?by Harry Bradshaw?) to a Coleman recording some years ago that he considered Andersen the finest piper he'd heard. A shame we don't have any recordings of him.
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Re: Lives of the Pipers-pipemaker listings, N. America pre-1

Post by nwhitmer »

Cormacc,

Thanks for the link. The set Brophy is playing seems excellent, & looks Andersonish, it's true.

To muddy the waters about James Cagney, I recall a Tionol in the 90s in NYC, where a set of pipes by Kennedy of Cork was present & said to have been once owned by the actor. At the time they were owned by Matty Connolly. Reference to this is in The Pipers' Review, Fall 1998, p. 21.

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Re: Lives of the Pipers-pipemaker listings, N. America pre-1

Post by cormacc »

It's very likely I'm mixing the two stories up. Had the pleasure of meeting and playing a few tunes with Matty at the Catskills tionol a number of years ago and probably heard the Cagney story then, and it's 20 years or more since Eamonn told me how he got hold of his set of pipes. Now that I think about it, Eamonn's pipes previous owner may have been James (fiddle) Morrison. Though that's an equally unreliable claim :) I'll confirm with Eamonn next time I run into him.
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Re: Lives of the Pipers-pipemaker listings, N. America pre-1

Post by kkrell »

cormacc wrote:Thanks Nick, very interesting resource to dip into. Re. the entry on Michael Andersen, you may be interested to see/hear an old clip of Eamonn Brophy playing a set of his manufacture here, around 30 minutes in.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ond4AhuN2LI

I believe that particular set used to belong to Jimmy Cagney, who besides his film work was apparently a competent dancer (?and piper?). As far as I remember, a relative of Jimmy's heard Eamonn busking in Dublin many years ago and arranged for him to get the set, which had presumably been sitting in an attic somewhere since his death. It's a lovely instrument.

Remember reading in the notes (?by Harry Bradshaw?) to a Coleman recording some years ago that he considered Andersen the finest piper he'd heard. A shame we don't have any recordings of him.
To whom does "he" refer to in this last paragraph? Coleman? Bradshaw? I ask, because the dates for Michael Andersen in an earlier post in this thread are 1865-1947, and Harry Bradshaw, to my knowledge, was born in 1947 - not a lot of overlap there, unless there are/were recordings. Would this "finest piper he'd heard" then refer to a note about a statement by Coleman?
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Re: Lives of the Pipers-pipemaker listings, N. America pre-1

Post by Mr.Gumby »

The set in the National Museum, the one with the star and shamrock detail is an Anderson isn't it, that's how I seem to remember it anyway.


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Here's Eamonn playing his, watched closely by Pat Mitchell:

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Re: Lives of the Pipers-pipemaker listings, N. America pre-1

Post by cormacc »

he = Coleman
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Re: Lives of the Pipers-pipemaker listings, N. America pre-1

Post by kkrell »

cormacc wrote:he = Coleman
Thank you for clarifying. Certainly a good testimonial. Since I know that Harry Bradshaw has especially worked with early 20th century material & so many private recordings, I wasn't sure if he himself had any brushes with something from Mr. Andersen.
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Re: Lives of the Pipers-pipemaker listings, N. America pre-1

Post by nwhitmer »

Mr. Gumby,

Thanks for the pics of the set in the National Museum. In 2003 Mark Walstrom wrote an article about early pipemakers in America (Pipers' Review Summer 2003 p. 20). At the time he was under the impression that the National Museum had an Anderson set, perhaps credited to the Taylor brothers. I don't know if maker attribution has been resolved. I asked the Museum about this in April 2020 but so far no response. Not surprising, what with the pandemic.

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Re: Lives of the Pipers-pipemaker listings, N. America pre-1

Post by Mr.Gumby »

I think it is recognised as Anderson's. I was in the National Museum to look at the pipes twice during the eighties, the second time with Mr. Wooff. We called in, got permission and were let into the room where the pipes were, some, like the Vandeleur set, lying in full sunlight on the window sill in a room not open to the public. The curator in charge said he was 'a coin and medals man' and had no knowledge of musical instruments. A bassoon used in the first performance of Handel's Messiah was standing in the corner, leaning against the wall. It was pretty much a 'leave the key in when you're done' situation. On one of the visits we were handed a signed first edition of O'Neill's 'Minstrels and musicians' took look at('we have some books on that stuff') and were not asked to hand it back when leaving, but I did anyway. It was pretty easy going and casual at the time.

Anyway, we took the Anderson (and some of the others) apart and had a peek at the insides.

As far as I know the set was acquired by the museum in 1972. I don't know the provenance.

Pics of the pipes are not mine, dug them out of the piping stuff living on the storage drive.
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