Between 1916 and 1921 Martin made a special line of guitars for Charles H. Ditson & Co. in New York. These guitars had a wide-waisted design since they were meant to played Hawaiian style and the normal narrow waist was no longer necessary. These guitars did not have a flat fingerboard or high saddle as later Hawaiian guitars but were supplied with a nut extender, so they could be easily converted between Spanish and Hawaiian playing.
Martin gave Ditson guitars their own serial numbers. A total of 571 Ditson guitars were made with these unique serial numbers.
Serial number 483 was ordered on March 19, 1919 and shipped on July 30, 1919.
A total of twelve Ditson 1-30 guitars were made, all at about the same time. These guitars have very distictive style 30 purfling and were some of the last Martin guitars made with this purfling. The backstripe was also made with a special type of purfling.
By 1919 the binding on Martin guitars had changed from ivory to white celluloid.
All Ditson guitars received a special "OLIVER DITSON CO. BOSTON NEW YORK" stamp on the back of th headstock.
Back and sides: Brazilian rosewood
Top: Red spruce (Adirondack)
Photos courtesy of Elderly Instruments.