Quick Reference

The NMM staff recommends the following sources as dependable resources for research about musical instruments.


The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, edited by Stanley Sadie (London and New York: Macmillan, 2001)
The Grove Dictionary of Musical Instruments, 2nd edition, Laurence Libin, ed. (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2014)
The Grove Dictionary of American Music, 2nd edition (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2013)
Grove Music Online
• William Waterhouse, The New Langwill Index: A Dictionary of Musical Wind-Instrument Makers and Inventors (London: Tony Bingham, 1993).
• Serial numbers for many brass and woodwind instrument manufacturers can be found at the Music Trader website.
• Serial numbers for many piano manufacturers can be found in the Bluebook of Pianos.
• Names, addresses, and product information for current musical instrument manufacturers can be found in The Purchaser's Guide to the Music Industries (Englewood, NJ: The Music Trades Corp.). For further information, visit the Music Trades website.
• Information and statistics about the modern musical instrument industry can be found at the National Association of Music Merchants and Music Trades websites.
• To research musical instrument collections in Europe, consult MIMO (Musical Instrument Museums Online).
• The Galpin Society website contains details of many scholarly articles and books about the history of musical instruments.
• The American Musical Instrument Society website lists articles published in its scholarly journal about musical instruments.
• If you have questions about the care, maintenance, and/or restoration of vintage or antique musical instruments, consult The Care of Historic Musical Instruments edited by Robert L. Barclay.