Gretsch is an American company that manufactures musical instruments. The company was founded in 1883 by Friedrich Gretsch, a German immigrant who came to the United States in 1881. Gretsch’s first factory was located in Brooklyn, New York. In the early 1900s, the company began manufacturing banjos, and later moved into producing guitars. Today, Gretsch is a well-known brand in the music industry, and their instruments are used by some of the world’s
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Gretsch is an American company that manufactures musical instruments. The company was founded in 1883 by Friedrich Gretsch, a 27-year-old German immigrant, who opened a small music shop in Brooklyn, New York. The company’s first successful product was a banjo ukulele called the “Broyles Banjo Uke”, which was launched in 1895. In 1916, Gretsch moved its operations to a larger factory in sunny Savannah, Georgia, where the company remains to this day.
Gretsch began manufacturing guitars in Brooklyn, New York in 1883. The company’s first factory was located on 37th Street near Eighth Avenue in the town of Sunset Park. In 1916, due to space constraints and the increasing popularity of their instruments, Gretsch moved its operations to a larger factory on Broadway between Fifth and Sixth Avenues. The move was prompted by an offer from the city of New York to buy the property for $1 million.
In 1953, Gretsch was sold to Fred W. Gretsch, Sr., who died suddenly in 1967. His son, Fred W. Gretsch, Jr., took over the company and oversaw its relocation to a larger facility at 2545 Bellaire Boulevard in Queens in 1972. He also oversaw the introduction of new models such as the Country Gentleman guitar and the White Falcon bass.
In 1982, Fred Gretsch Jr. sold the company to Baldwin Piano Company. Baldwin then sold Gretsch to Japan’s Yamano Music Company in 1989. Under Yamano’s ownership, Gretsch underwent a period of significant expansion and growth. New factories were built in Japan and Korea, and a new line of entry-level instruments was introduced.
In 2002, Fred W. Gretsch III (the grandson of the company’s founder) re-acquired ownership of the Gretsch company from Yamano Music Company with the help of a group of private investors. The company remains family-owned and is currently headquartered in Savannah, Georgia.
In 1992, Fender’s then-parent company, CBS Corporation, sold the Gretsch company to Fred W. Gretsch IV, a great-grandson of Friedrich Gretsch. As of 2019, all Gretsch electric guitars are made in Korea. Several lower-priced models are made in China and Indonesia. Acoustic instruments are still made in the United States at the factories in Bozeman, Montana, and Ridgeland, Mississippi.
Gretsch guitars are made in a variety of locations, including China, Japan, and the United States. The company has a long history of manufacturing guitars in the United States, and their American-made instruments are highly sought after by collectors and players alike. However, Gretsch has also outsourced manufacturing to other countries in recent years in order to keep costs down and meet demand. This has led to some controversy among guitar fans, but ultimately it comes down to personal preference as to whether or not you want to buy a Gretsch guitar that was made outside of the United States.