Wolfgang’s Jacks

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Info 1K gif Klaus Ahrend Germany 70
Info 1K gif K G Ammer Germany 74
Info 1K gif Bannister Harpsichords USA 81
Info 1K gif John Brueggeman USA 88
Info 1K gif Walter Burr USA 90
Info 1K gif Herbert Burton USA 91
Info 1K gif John Challis USA 94
Info 1K gif William de Blaise UK 104
Info 1K gif Arnold Dolmetsch Ltd UK 108
Info 1K gif William Dowd USA 113
Info 1K gif Gerard Fonvieille * France 119
Info 1K gif Eric Herz Harpsichords USA 129
Info 1K gif Frank Hubbard USA 130
Info 1K gif Hunnel and Witcher * USA 135
Info 1K gif Jones-Clayton Harpsichords Ltd USA 139
Info 1K gif Joe T Marshall * Thailand 144
Info 1K gif Mars McMillan * Australia 144
Info 1K gif Eckehart Merzdorf Germany 145
Info 1K gif Shoji Momose Japan 146
Info 1K gif Robert Morley & Co Ltd UK 149
Info 1K gif John Nargesian USA 152
Info 1K gif J C Neupert Germany 153
Info 1K gif The John Paul Company UK 158
Info 1K gif Société Pleyel, SA France 162
Info 1K gif Gerhard Ranftl Germany 166
Info 1K gif Martin Sassmann Germany 175
Info 1K gif Martin Scholz, Hug & Co * Switzerland 176
Info 1K gif Rudolf Schüler Germany 177
Info 1K gif Rainer Schütze * Germany 178
Info 1K gif Martin Skowroneck Germany 184
Info 1K gif Kurt Sperrhake Germany 186
Info 1K gif Kurt Wittmayer Germany 196
Info 1K gif Zuckermann Harpsichords Inc USA 206
Wolfgang Joachim Zuckermann portrait 13K jpeg

The Modern Harpsichord by Wolfgang Joachim Zuckermann (1922–2018) was published in 1969, and went through three printings in a short time. Many people have asked us to try to assist them in obtaining this book, but it is well out of print and now on the rare list, good copies fetching prices over USD110.

The Modern Harpsichord book cover 9K jpeg The book caused considerable controversy upon its release, and because of its criticism of the modern German builders, it was banned outright in that country. Of course, this helped ensure it made more sales in Germany than anywhere else. Because of imminent legal action, Zuckermann had to leave the United States. Prior to moving to England, he sold his company to the late David Jacques Way, who as head of October House had actually published the book, and written the “Appendix by a harpsichord kit builder”.

The central theme of The Modern Harpsichord—that harpsichords should be made today as they were in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries—altered the course of modern harpsichord development. So many things have changed in the last quarter of a century that merely reprinting the book today would give a misleading impression of the scene. The book would have to be completely rewritten, which Wolfgang will never do.

Displayed behind glass in the showroom of our workshop in Sydney are the actual jacks collected by Wolfgang from makers around the world. You can follow the links in the table to view the individual jacks, or watch the movie below. With the exception of those makers whose names are marked in the table with an asterix, all the jacks visitors can see in our display were photographed for inclusion in his book, and occur on the page numbers mentioned. All are a testimony to modern ingenuity.

Movie thumb 2K jpeg Movie 1K gif Wolfgang‘s Jacks
The jacks collected by Wolfgang Zuckermann from makers around the world for his 1969 book The Modern Harpsichord.
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Wolfgang’s Jacks display in the workshop 32K jpeg

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