Carlton F. Stanley violin, Newton, MA 1926
New England luthier Carlton Fairfield Stanley was born in 1879 in Newton, Massachusetts and died there circa 1950. His great grandfather Liberty Stanley (b. 1776) was a farmer and amateur violin maker in Kingfield, Maine and his uncles were the legendary twin brothers Freelan Oscar (1849â1940) and Francis Edgar Stanley (1849â1918), who were extraordinarily versatile inventors and entrepreneurs in the Boston area. In addition to inventing the Stanley Steamer automobile, the Stanley Dry Plate photo processing system (sold to the Eastman Kodak Company in 1904), and an image-focusing device which improved the precision of the X-ray machine, the brothers were also violin makers who established a successful commercial violin business in Newton around 1900. Carlton trained and worked at the shop with his uncles, becoming a highly prolific maker of over 500 instruments. Many of his instruments were sold âin the whiteâ to the famous Wurlitzer musical instrument company, whose own workshop varnished them. Among the numerous clients who purchased C. F. Stanley violins was Henry Ford, the automobile manufacturer and well-known collector of fine violins and bows.