Clifford Essex Paragon Banjo


Another Clifford Essex ‘sleeper’ Banjo is discovered and consigned to our 24th September Specialist Musical Instrument sale.

Clifford Essex Paragon Banjo

Clifford Essex Banjos 

Clifford Essex is a major name in the banjo world but these finely crafted instruments are rarely seen on the market. The last time we handled an Essex banjo was when we discovered one in the corner of a window of a Shelter charity shop. Luckily we were able to advise them of the potential of this instrument and it was sold in aid of the charity for £2,300 in our November 2015 sale.

Now another Clifford Essex ‘Paragon’ banjo has been found by a local vendor whilst sorting out their loft. The banjo, left to the vendor by a relative in a will shows signs of being ‘asleep’ for some time but not neglected and outside a good clean up is in good condition. We expect the banjo to sell in the region of £1,500 – 2,500.

Clifford Essex Paragon Banjo detail.

Clifford Essex was a notable banjo player and teacher but entered into the business of selling instruments in 1883. These early instruments were produced by various factories branded up under the name of the earlier partnership Essex & Cammeyer. By 1900 most instruments were made in house and it is from this golden period that our banjo hails from. The five string has an ebony headstock and fingerboard finely inlaid with engraved pearl. It is fitted with rosewood and maple resonator and neck, the tone bar is stamped ‘Paragon’ 83 and bears the makers address plate Clifford Essex and Co. 15A Grafton Street London, which allows us to date the instrument to between 1900 and 1919.The instrument is fitted with Waverly tuners and a nice touch period case bearing the Clifford Essex and Son Ltd.

Clifford Essex Banjo headstock

The banjo will be sold as part our 24th September Musical Instrument sale. If you have any musical instruments you would like to consign to sale we would be pleased to hear from you. Please contact Chris Large on 01270 623878,  email or fill out a valuation page online.


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