If you were in the Prussian Foot Artillery you would play a
Single Horn in F


Single F with Terminal Crook
Serial Number:
Date of Manufacture:
ca. 1890 - 1905
F, with terminal crook
3 rotary
1.125 cm.
Bell Flare:
wide vee-gusset, no garland
Bell Throat:
ca. 7.2 cm.
Bell Diameter:
31.25 cm.
Base Metal:
gold (red/rose) brass with nickel-silver trim
(clck on photos for larger view)

The firm of Ed. Kruspe was established in Erfurt, Germany in 1864 by Johann Eduard Kruspe (1831-1919), elder son of Carl Kruspe (1808 - 1885). Carl Kruspe had established his workshop originally in Mühlhausen in Thüringen (1829 - 1836) then Erfurt (1836 - after 1930) for the manufacture of brass and woodwind instruments. Rather than going into business with his father, Eduard established his own workshop as successor to Carl Zielsdorf. In 1893 operation of the firm was turned over to Eduard's son, Fritz Kruspe (ca. 1862 - 1909) and has continued to the present under the name Ed. Kruspe. This horn is unsual in that it is made with gold brass (or red or rose brass) having a higher percentage of copper than the more common yellow brass. This gives the horn a pleasing reddish hue, but is softer and more prone to being dented. It probably also reduces the horn's projection as compared to yellow brass and nickel-silver horns.
The simple label is common on earlier brass instruments from Kruspe. This horn is believed to be from the workshop of Eduard Kruspe but does not bear the name "Ed." as found on later instruments. It perhaps also predates the appointment as "Hoflieferant" (purveyor to the Court) as indicated on labels from the late nineteeth and early twentieth centuries, although the horn bears military engraving (see below).

The circular finger plates are typical with Kruspe and other makers in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. The clockwork springs are fitted with ratchets to adjust the spring tension to suit the player. The dual crescent linkages are typical of Kruspe horns from this period. Note the contrast of the yellow brass patch with the gold brass on the crook receiver.
The bell is marked "A. F. 17 II" on the edge of the bell on the side opposite from the Kruspe label. This indicates that it was the property of the II Battery of the Second Battalion of Regiment 17 of Prussian Foot Artillery XVII Army Corps (2. Westpreußisches Fußartillerie-Regiment Nr. 17 (Danzig-Pillau ) XVII Armee Korps). "A. F." was the abbreviation for "foot artillery". Division 2 dates back to 1818, however, regiment 17 wasn't formed until 1911 in Danzig-Pillau. This date seems quite late for the estimated date of this horn. Perhaps it was carried over from an earlier regiment. Research continues on this identification.

Thanks to Tony Schnurr at Kaiser's Bunker for interpreting the engraving on the bell.

Kaiser's Bunker

Wikipedia: 2nd Division (German Empire)

Waterhouse, William, The New Langwill Index of Wind Instrument Makers and Inventors, pub.Tony Bingham, London 1993

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