Oskar Meinel 1956 Marckneukirken, Germany 4/4 Strad Copy Violin
Ernst Heinrich Roth (1877–1948) was a German luthier and master of a large and successful violin-making workshop that he opened in 1902 in Markneukirchen, Germany. He was the son of a violin maker who also had a shop in Markneukirchen. While Roth employed apprentice and journeyman builders in his shop, many people believe that he himself made the best instruments that his shop produced. By the time this violin was built in 1956, Roth's business and family had undergone many changes.
In 1921, When Ernst's son, Ernst II, moved to the US and founded the trading company, Scherl & Roth, which introduced Roth's instruments and bows to this country. Ernst's second son, Gustav Albert (called Albert), learned violinmaking from his family and stayed with the company in Markneukirchen. As the Third Reich gained power in Germany and during WWII, the political situation caused the quality and quantity of instruments produced by the shop to drop. Despite diligent effort to repair the company after the war, the company was till struggling when Ernst Heinrich Roth died in Markneukirchen in 1948. Albert Roth took over the management of the company and moved it to Bubenreuth/Erlangen in the Federal Republic of Germany (after legal issues forced liquidation of the assets in Markneukirchen in 1953).
When Albert died in 1961, his son Ernst III, who earned his master violinmaking certificate that same year, took over and expanded the business. Ernst III's son, Wilhelm - also a trained violinmaker, joined in the management the company in 1985. Ernst III and Wilhelm still manage the company which still has a branch office in Markneukirchen.
Because the company manufactured a wide range of qualities of instruments at various price points over the years, knowledge of the company and of violin construction is important in evaluating Roth's instruments. Most people who know violins agree that Meinel violins were made in the Roth workshop. The construction and labels of Meinel violins support that theory. The arching, linings, scroll and varnish of Meinel violins are consistent with nicer quality Roth instruments of the same era. The labels in Meinel violins and straight Roths have almost perfectly identical designs: curley-que cursive writing encircled by a scalloped border on an ivory label. While the instrument was clearly built in Bubenreuth, the label references Markneukirchen. This inconsistency may be because the labels were printed before the move to Bubenruth or because the company maintained a satellite in Markneukirchen.
This violin is in excellent condition with no repairs.
Some play wear expected on a violin that is more than 50 years old.
The solid, carved spruce top is tight grained.
The solid, carved maple back and sides have impressive, medium curl flame.
Fittings are ebony.
Evah Pirrazi Strings.