margaret holloway


    Melodeon or spinnet piano, c. 1868.

    This instrument is played much like a pump organ. It has a bellows mounted below the case, and pedals below. The case is covered in a rosewood verneer, with an interlocking pattern on the legs. The keys are covered in a fine veneer of ivory. 

    Inside, the entire history of this instrument has been written in pencil. One inscription says it was originally sold on October 24, 1868 by MK (or MA) Schryer. Multiple times, it was brought to B.F. Godfrey at “Cross Roads” for repair, and he made a notation each time. It was repaired for the last time and restored in 1969 by L.A. Brackney in Springfield, Ohio.

  The piano stool dates to about 1870 and was made by H. Holtzman. The seat rotates. Each of the cast iron claw feet clutches a clear glass ball.

    The melodeon belonged to Margaret Morgan Holloway, born in 1882. She acquired it when she was a school teacher. Margaret married Jesse “Clyde” Holloway at age 25 on March 14, 1907. They lived in Lyndon, Ohio, and had two sons.  In 1959, Margaret died as the result of an automobile accident. Her son, Grant, had the melodeon restored.