S. S. Stewart “Orchestra” fretless banjo, S/N 3321, Circa 1887

Almost all early Stewarts were originally sold as fretless banjos, though many were subsequently fretted when frets became popular in the early 1890’s. This style, with pearl dot fret markers on the side of the fingerboard, was called “professional frets” by Stewart. Fretless Stewarts are quite rare, and this one is in wonderful condition.  The rim appears to be silver, rather than nickel, plated.

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