Vintage Instruments, Inc, on the Avenue of the Arts in Center City, Philadelphia ~ Established in 1974
We have a dedicated staff with a breadth of knowledge and experience. Fred Oster and Catherine Jacobs, as the shop owners, wear dozens of hats.
The very talented Natalie Dewey — violinist and opera singer — is our cheerful and capable Assistant Manager. Sarah W. Peck, John Thorell, Christo Wood and bow maker Stephen Salchow specialize in violin maintenance and restoration.
You will receive very personal attention in our shop. We’re dedicated to doing well what we do, building expertise in the instruments, and working one-on-one with people to help them find an instrument that gives the greatest satisfaction for their needs and preferences.
This may sound simple, but we understand that finding the right instrument is a different process for every musician.
Our Building's Story
Fred and WGBH's "Antiques Roadshow"
Many people recognize Fred from his appearances on the WGBH Antiques Roadshow. Fred joined the ranks of the Antiques Roadshow appraisers in 1996, and has had wonderful experiences traveling around the country, meeting people and helping them to learn more abut their instruments. We’re frequently asked which instruments have been the most remarkable, so here are some of Fred’s favorite WGBH Antiques Roadshow musical instrument moments:
1927 Gibson Florentine Tenor Banjo
Martin Style 3-K Ukulele c.1930
A Collection of C.F. Martin Guitar Building Molds
A very special 1861 E.G. Wright silver cornet
1936 RB-11 Gibson 5-string banjo
S.S. Stewart Banjos made in Philadelphia, c.1897