In 2002 Gibson created a limited-edition, presentation model banjo, known as “The Earl” to honor the career of Earl Scruggs. All of these banjos featured an Indian rosewood neck and resonator, green abalone “hearts & Flowers” inlay with 14 carat gold outlines on the neck and peghead veneer, a 14 carat gold Mastertone block, pure silver and silver-plated, engraved hardware, a gold-plated, flathead tone ring, maple binding and marquetry on the neck and resonator, and a hand-drawn portrait of Earl on the resonator back. Each one was autographed by Mr. Scruggs.
The first of these banjos was given to Mr. Scruggs on July 19th, 2002 and only four more were ever built. One of the original five was damaged in the 2009 Nashville flood, leaving only four intact examples known. The banjo pictured here is the second of the five instruments and comes in the original leather TKL case with a built-in thermometer and humidity gauge. The banjo is in excellent condition with some tarnish to the silver-plating evident. This banjo is an example of Gibson’s highest level of craftsmanship and appeals to collectors as well as musicians, due to its unique design, workmanship and association with Earl Scruggs.
The last person to play this banjo was Earl himself and it has not been played since. Photos of Mr. Scruggs playing the banjo are available to the next owner. For additional information please contact Huber Banjos LLC - (615) 264-4959.