Martin Guitars

1919 Ditson 1-45 Guitar (Baby D-45), Serial Number 466

Martin began making Ditson guitars with the wide-waisted shape in 1915. The initial production guitars were relatively plain guitars with mahogany back and sides. It was not until 1919 that Ditson guitars were made with Brazilian rosewood bodies and the full range of Martin models were offered: styles 21, 28, 30, 42 and 45. (For the record it should be mentioned that Vahdah Olcott-Bickford bought two Ditson 3/4-21 guitars in 1918.)

The rosewood Ditsons were ordered for just one year and only four Ditson 1-45 guitars were made, with serial number 466 being the last.

Although Martin always referred to these guitar as "Ditson Model 1-45" they have been popularly names "Baby D-45" because of their small size but with a wide waist reminiscent of a Dreadnought guitar.

Serial number 466 was ordered on March 19, 1919 and was shipped to Charles H. Ditson & Co. in New York on July 29, 1919.

The tuners are most likely Dinsmore & Jager #9 machines with inlaid ivory buttons. A distinctive fleur-de-lis pattern is engraved on the backing plates.

Although Martin had stopped putting ivory bridges on their own guitar in 1917, the Ditson 1-45 guitars were supplied with that feature.

The last photograph shows Chris Andrada holding two of the four Ditson 1-45 guitars.

The guitar comes with its original green-lined keratol case.

Style 45 features:

Back and sides: Brazilian rosewood

Top: Red spruce (Adirondack)

Purfling: Abalone

Abalone sound hole ring

Binding: Ivoroid

Backstripe: Fancy purfling strip

Other period features:

Fan braced

Ebony fingerboard

Ivory pyramid bridge

Ebony bar neck reinforcement

1-7/8" neck width at nut

Style 45 Japan pearl snowflake fingerboard inlays

Oliver Ditson Co. stamp on back of headstock

No style stamp

Photos courtesy of Chris Andrada

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