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Curry's Cycle Co.


Doug
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I just bought this phonograph from a guy who said it was his brothers and he had brought it back from England. It is an oak case, the reproducer says Currys Cycle Co. , the brass horn is about 22" across and 24" long. The name tag on the front of the machine has worn away, but I imaging it said Currys also. I can't seem to find much about it. E-bay has a pamphlet on the company with some picture of a few outside horned phonographs that look similar but not exact horns. I think it was originally a bicycle company that branched out and sold other items like gramaphones. I'm wondering about the date on this, is it from the teens, twenties, or newer? Does anyone know where I can get a new stencil? Any other information would be greatly appreciated, thanks so much.

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Yes, Currys started as a bicycle business , Leicester, but diversified into talking machines, like so many bicycle shops, because bicycles sold in the summer and talking machines in the winter.  The company survives as one of the leading chains of electrical goods in the UK.  A member of the Curry family, the late Peter Curry, was a long standing member of the City of London Phonograph & Gramophone Society.  A short history of the firm appeared in the Society magazine For the Record, in 2010, and there was a list of the various gramophone models they were offering in 1916-17 in a 2008 issue, but with only machine illustrated, and that not identified.  It is quite likely that your machine had a model name in the missing transfer on the front, not just 'Currys'.  (I am assuming, of course, that this is a Curry's gramophone, and not some other make that has acquired   Currys  soundbox at some time in its life.  That is a common occurrence, but I think it is probably correct in this case. The brass horn is less likely to be original to the machine, although in WW1 supplies were a constant problem and a gramophone might have been fitted with whatever horn  happened to be available on the day of sale.  I can't be certain that this one is of WW1 vintage, but it certainly looks to be of that era.  It has a tapered tone arm, so cannot be earlier than 1910, while gramophones like this continued o be on offer well into the 1920s.

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