c.1940 Kay-made "Calvert" Archtop Guitar

While I have no idea who owned the "Calvert" brand, this guitar is undoubtedly made by Kay around 1940. It's a good quality guitar, with solid spruce top, solid maple sides and neck, and a flamed three-ply maple back. Work on this one included a neck set, fret dress, and setup.

It's entirely crack free, sports tortoise binding on the top, back, and fretboard, and has all of its original components -- super-cool lyre tailpiece, rosewood adjustable bridge, rosewood fretboard with dot and diamond inlay, finish in great glossy thin shape, bone nut, and original Kluson tuners with slightly deteriorating buttons.

Rosewood headstock veneer. Those tuners work great.

This is such a fantastic-looking period charmer. Has a heck of a lot of class to it.

It's also a tone monster with instantaneous response, loads of smooth snappy treble, and round but precise bass. Great sustain, too.

The white backing for the tortoise binding really pops the stuff out from the sides.

This is definitely the guitar to play if you'd like to get noticed on stage.

Neck profile is a bigger D shape but is quite fast. This has that old-Kay narrow-ish nut which makes it great for lead lines.

Curiously, though the neck is maple, they decided to paint faux-flame on its back under the finish.

Glorious deep amber/red/crimson-brown sunburst.

Original end pin, too.


Anonymous said…
I have a Lord Calvert Guitar arch top. Great sound. I am guessing around 1940 This is the first place i have found any other Lord Calvert. Do you have more history on Lord calvert. Fort Wanyne Indiana
Chuck: Sorry -- Calvert just appears to be either a department store or catalog brand used on instruments -- in this case it's made by Kay in Chicago.
Jason Evans said…
I've got a restored Lord Calvert that I inherited from my grandfather, and this site is the first I've ever seen with others as well. He told me that he bought it used in Baltimore circa 1938. We had it restored in the early 1990s, and the folks who restored had never heard of it either. Sounds beautiful
CE & SONS said…
I would love to get my hands on one of these as my first name is Calvert! It would be cool going on stage with it!
Still learnin said…
Calvert there is one for sale on the Roanoke, Virginia Craigslist for $500.
Anonymous said…
I have a lord calvert i am from kendallville indiana just north of ft wayne
CE & SONS said…
If any of you find another one for sale, PLEASE, contact me directly at, calscloset@gmail.com, I'd love to get one!!
Nick R said…
This guitar appears to be very similar to the 1941 Kay made Silvertone Crest that Jake featured.