421.121.12-71 Open side-blown flute with fingerholes, with keys

Ward 1842 patent system flute.

This flute is based on one of seven designs patented by Cornelius Ward in 1842. Ward was not averse to borrowing the designs of others, and his flutes of the 1830s had come dangerously close to infringing patents for the 1832 Boehm key system. He perfected his own design in 1844, the version he finally settled on being very similar to this example. Borrowed ideas, for example the Dorus key and needle springs, linked Ward's flutes to those of other innovators of his day, but more original design features, like the 'open-keyed' configuration and the tracker wires running along the underside, were distinctive to his instruments.

Collection Information

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