The piano-making firm of George Dettmer and Son was founded by our George Dettmer at the very beginning of the Nineteenth Century.  George was believed to have been born in Germany. The "son" was William Dettmer (b.1775), who ran the company for many years. In 1827 he took out a patent for a system for changing the pitch of a piano. Following financial difficulties in 1845, he migrated to Sydney where he established a branch of the firm.

There was a colony of German and Scottish piano makers in the Soho area of London, making square pianos like the Dettmer instruments illustrated here. (Other pianos of the "grand" variety were manufactured in the Cheapside district.)

Records reveal many Dettmers who called themselves "Pianoforte maker" from the 1750s throughout much of the nineteenth century. We must assume that they were related to George and William and that they were employed in the family firm.

(Corrections and further information will be gratefully received. Contact bill@kellaway.info)

A Dettmer dated 1805
Return to Dettmer page Return to Home page
The Grand PianoThe GrandThe strings
Images of the Dettmer Grand piano
 supplied by Mr John Kelly
A plate in
George Hart, The Violin, (London, Dulau & Co, 1884)
Betts StradReturn to the Dettmer page