Accession number: 2007.004.002
Date: 1796 – July 19 2007
Measurements: 21.5 cm L x 17.5 cm W x 4 cm H x 0.5 cm ThickStand is 39 cm high and the support poles have a diameter of 1cm.
Narrative: Myth has it that the first music box was designed for the amusement and entertainment of Marie Antoinette. History, on the other hand, reveals the availability of musical clocks constructed in the 16th century for royalty and the wealthy. The musical tones were derived by notching a revolving disc striking a single pin. The music box proper was introduced by Antoine Favre, a Swiss watchmaker, in 1796, enabling the middle class to dance and enjoy the popular music of the period in the privacy of their homes. The latter half of the 19th century rewarded the world with the enchanting melodies of the disc player, the predecessor of the contemporary phonograph, tapes and discs. These instruments were not only produced in Europe, but had great success by American manufacturers.
Inside the drawer of the music box is a piece of paper that lists two English folk songs- ‘The man in the moon’ and ‘I loved you better than you knew’. These songs were popular in the early 1900’s.
Description: Music Box is a rectangle with a crank sticking out of the box on the lower left hand side. The bottom half of the box is black fabric while the top half is a red fabric. On the top of the music box there is a drawer with a copper decorative pull out handle. Around the side of the music box there is a horse shoe shaped metal frame which folds out into a stand. There are small levers on the side which fold out and support the music box when folded out. Crank key detaches.