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Buyer Pays £310,000 for Roy Rogers’ Martin Acoustic

Published: Tue April 07, 2009  News Feed

An anonymous buyer has paid an amazing £310,000 (US$460,000) for a rare Martin acoustic guitar that was once owned by singing cowboy Roy Rogers.

Roy Rogers, the singing cowboy

The guitar, which was auctioned by Christies Auctions for The Roy Rogers-Dale Evans Museum in Branson, Mo., was built in 1930 and is considered one of the rarest and most coveted acoustic guitars in the world.

The OM-45 Deluxe model acoustic guitar – the very first one of only 15 produced by Martin in 1930 – was originally purchased for a mere $30 from a pawn shop in California in 1933 by a young and unknown musician named Leonard Franklin. Franklin, of course, later changed his name to Roy Rogers and because a country music legend, using the guitar extensively in countless recordings and stage appearances. He retired the guitar in the mid-1940s.

Roy Rogers guitar

The guitar was sold with its original green sash guitar strap, and a gold star sticker next to the bridge from a flour promotion campaign that Rogers did in the mid-1930s.

Rogers died in 1998. He was a two-time inductee into the Country Music Hall of Fame and starred in over 100 films, plus a popular television show.

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