Founded in 1854, Mason & Hamlin is one of America’s oldest and most respected piano manufacturers. Of the hundreds of American piano companies that flourished in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Mason & Hamlin is one of only a handful that survive today.
Mason & Hamlin is headquartered in Haverhill, Massachusetts, not far from its original location in Boston, the birthplace of American piano design and manufacturing. Six floors of its busy factory are dedicated to handcrafting Mason & Hamlin pianos. Within its walls, a workforce of 70 highly skilled craftsmen complete every phase of production from rim-pressing to prepping the finished product. (See Craftsmanship.)
Attention to detail takes time, and Mason & Hamlin invests a great deal of it in every piano it makes. Before a Mason & Hamlin leaves the factory, it’s inspected no fewer than 12 times. Choosing quality over quantity, Mason & Hamlin limits its annual production to 50 uprights and 300 grand pianos. Mason & Hamlin is a forward-thinking company that invests time and millions of dollars in creating its products. But along with its eye to the future is one trained on the past. That’s why the factory’s top floor showroom will one day house the Mason & Hamlin Museum, where vintage instruments, artifacts and memorabilia will be on display to the public. The museum and creation of the Mason & Hamlin Historical Preservation Society are just two ways the company is honoring its long and illustrious history.
“Mason & Hamlin pianos have a mystique about them,” explained Gary Burgett, who owns the company with his brother, Kirk. “There are countless Mason & Hamlin aficionados around the world. When we bought the company 1996, we heard from so many of them, all grateful that we were going to keep this great piano alive. They encouraged and inspired us. Now we’d like to show our appreciation for their interest and support with a special website where they can share their stories about the pianos they love, meet fellow Mason & Hamlin fans, and also have a place to see Mason & Hamlin treasures. We hope that someday soon everyone who’s interested will be able to come to our factory, see how we’re making our pianos today, what we have planned for the future, and then enjoy a glimpse at our past.”