Re: The Year of the Conn
I saw a 1948 10M naked lady on ebay a few nights ago that looked really nice for $1500.
Even the later 10's are good horns, as I don't believe any of the 10M's were made in Mexico or even Nogales. Conn started moving production to Nogales in 1969. After 1972, they started moving production across the border into Mexico, and later models WERE made in Mexico and were stamped Mexico above the thumb rest. After Daniel Henkin took Conn back from MacMillan in 1980 He started closing the Conn factories in Mexico and returned Conn to Elkhart, Indiana. Unfortunately, the Selmer Snobs had already taken over Elkhart when they bought out Buescher in 1963. With the poor reputation of Conn after the Macmillan years, and Selmer cornering the market, Daniel Henkin was fighting a losing battle. He sold Conn to UMI, which also became part of Selmer.
After Carl Greenleaf retired in 1949, the Conn company really started going down hill. They had the market! They also had the technology, with some of the greatest saxophonists of all time helping to design new instruments. Unfortunately, the research wasn't put into production fast enough. When Leland Greenleaf stepped up in 1959, the company was in serious financial trouble, and Leland felt that the only way Conn would survive was to expand and produce other musical instruments, including organs, guitars and drums; having aquired Ludwig. By 1969, Selmer had a hold on the school market with their Buescher Bundy line, and Leland feared a bitter take over by Selmer, selling the company to Macmillan. Interesting history. The Selmer company is very shrude in the way they do business!