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Baby Baby Grand Piano and Salesman Sample Pianos
The rare baby Baby Grand Piano
Recently, on two separate occasions I came in contact with an interesting item, the baby Baby Grand Piano. As part of a casual eBay business, I often visit antique shops, barn sales and auctions. I recently came across what seemed to be a perfect dollhouse copy of a Baby Grand Piano, on close inspection it was considerably larger than would fit in any modern dollhouse and a bit to small for a child to use. The detail on this piano was amazing, working keys and pedals, a nice patina on the wood and to my untrained ear a very nice sound.
This little Baby Grand piano also had a matching bench which was quite beautiful but didnt seem like it would comfortably seat even a small child.
On a fun note, I got reprimanded for touching the keys, actually. I figured this item was at least worth a hundred dollars and was willing to bid on it. When the auction began, I was surprised to see an opening bid of $500 for this novelty. I was astonished to see that the item closed for $5600!
This led me to search for further information about the "baby" Baby Grand Piano.
Why a baby Baby Grand Piano
It turns out this miniature piano that sold for $5600 in front of me was a rare Salesman Sample piano, the condition was of a very unusual near mint quality.
It seems in the past, Salesman would carry this miniature pianos that were near perfect replicas of true Baby Grand Pianos. They would leave them for a short time with families or stores that were well off enough to afford the real thing as a way of demoing the piano.
Because of the lifestyle of these traveling salesmen, these pianos were bound to get beat up and discarded and as a result are rather desirable to collectors when one of decent quality shows up in estate sales and forgotten barns.
Ive been looking on eBay in recent months and have yet to see one come up for auction. Perhaps, the sellers mislabel them, unaware of what they really have on their hands!
I did find a sale recently close on etsy though - http://www.etsy.com/listing/19042861/piano-antique-baby-grand-salesmans It is very similar to the one I saw myself and is from a seller no more than a 2 hours drive from where I first encountered the salesman sample baby grand myself.
Antique Salesmans Samples - Pianos, Instruments, Medicine and More
Although, its not likely that I will run into another salesman sample baby grand piano anytime soon, I was excited to learn about the collectible and novelty nature of antique salesman samples. I often pause at the miniature tents at sporting goods stores and wish I could purchase it as a laugh for one of my pets. I also get reminded of John Candy's character in "Planes, Trains and Automobiles" with his shower rings. It seems like a fun and unique collection ..at the very least it wont take up as much space as most!
The other Baby Baby Grand
I have stumbled upon another version of the baby Baby Grand Piano and I will highlight it below, just so you dont confuse the two i you happen to be on a similar search.
Some very high quality child size grand pianos have been produced, if you happen upon a childs Baby Grand that is a bit older and has some signs of wear, its not impossible to confuse the two.
Apparently, they are great to instill an early love of music in children. I just see a picture of the piano kid from "Peanuts", but , I might just be over-saturated in pop culture.