was a fire on May 22, 1910 that destroyed the Conn plant.
The plant was rebuilt in short order, though, and Conn
produced a limited editon of horns for the rest of the
year (and through some of 1912, it seems) to celebrate
their rebirth: the New Invention model (1).
Please also note that Conn serial number and model data
may have been destroyed, as well (2): this
makes serial number charts for this period a bit suspect
(e.g., the baritone example I have above has a serial number
that translates to 1909 on most serial number charts, but
the horn obviously is of completely different manufacture
than other 1909 baritones. Either the serial number is
incorrect or the charts are off a bit -- or Conn had some
older baritone bodies that they custom engraved and added
customized keywork and a microtuner to).
- Single octave key
and Eb vent key, as on the Wonder models.
keys are introduced for this series only. They disappear after 1912 (again)
and are then reintroduced around 1917.
- Models were probably available only in gold plate or silver-plate body
with gold keywork or gold highlights, keeping with the "limited" idea.
- Horns may have some additional pearl
keytouches (on one or more of the following: side keys, altissimo keys, G#
- Note that curved sopranos do NOT have the Mercedes-Benz-logo low C keyguard.
- All examples of these horns have exquisite engraving and possibly each horn
had unique engraving.
- (All) models may have an early version of the microtuner
neck. There are at least three versions of this neck throughout the years:
the one found on these horns, the one found on New Wonder horns and the one found
on the "Transitional" 6M and later -- I've found only one of these
patents so far (the one for the 6M), but that's due more to the fact that patents
before 1920 are inaccessible without a patent number.
The microtuner on
the bari looks like it COULD be an aftermarket addition, but that's
a violation of copyright and it'd be hard to cut-and-paste just
the microtuner assembly from a newer alto or C melody -- and make
the bore the right size.