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1868 Fiske Catalog

Fiske Instruments


One piece instrument bow
Piston actuated straight line rotary valves
Piston actuated triangularly arranged rotary valves
Piston actuated equally spaced rotary valves
Better valve windway angles and crooks replaced by quick change valve


Worcester, MA



Issac Fiske (d. 1894)started his business in 1842. He made keyed, piston and rotary valved instruments. He was responsible for manufacturing instruments which had both keys and valves on them, but discontinued such instruments in favor of the valved ones.

Fiskes instruments were endorsed by Matthew Arbuckle and Harvey Dodworth of the famous Dodworth Band of New York City. Dodworth claimed Fiskes instruments to be one of the finest makers of cornets in the United States.

His factory burned down in 1854, but was immediately relocated. In 1866, Fiske received his first patent for a unique rotary valve/ piston action valve system. The finger buttons were attached to stems that passed through a casing and then to a rotary valve.

He was a willing innovator in methods of production, and his company spawned other companies as employees left to test their own fortunes, including Heald; Leland; and McFadden & Beaumont.

In 1887, Fiske sold his plant and business to C. G. CONN and retired. Conn in 1887 continued to manufacture instruments in the Fiske factory until 1898.

He was the first American maker to sponsor a band to promote his products.

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