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John Franklin Stratton  1832-1912

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.. His first commercial venture in 1859 was to open a shop in New York as a music retailer being an accomplished player of wind instruments and a leader of various bands and orchestras.  During the civil war he was a supplier of field trumpets.  

 

Stratton & John Foote joined forces in 1864 to buy an instrument importing business and then set up several companies in Germany to manufacture both woodwind and stringed instruments.

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In 1883 he sold his factories and in 1889 went into partnership in the musical instrument business with Frank, his son as Stratton & Son.  It is probably during this period that he sold banjos, almost certainly made for him by Buckbee, under the model names of Bijou and Appolo. These would have been gut strung banjos.

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