In 1853, Paul G. Mehlin emigrated from Germany to New York where he established The Paul G. Mehlin Piano Company. His original firm was located at 4 East 43rd Street, New York City. It is speculated that Mehlin started out as a retailer and journeyman rather than an actual manufacturer.
During these early years, Mehlin worked closely with several of New York’s prominent manufacturers including Bacon & Raven and Lighte & Bradbury. Mehlin left the piano industry in 1861 to serve in the Union Army during the Civil War. After the Civil War ended, Gabler went to work with the firm of “Chambers & Gabler“. In 1884, Mehlin became a partner at “Behr Brothers & Company“.
In 1889, Paul G. Mehlin took his sons into partnership and established his own manufacturing firm of “Paul G. Mehlin & Sons”. Instruments by Mehlin & Sons were exceedingly well-built and the firm was very successful. Their instruments were sold alongside some of the most prominent piano makers in history. Mehlin also built a successful line of pianos under The Century Piano Company brand name which were sold as an affordable alternative to costlier Mehlin pianos while offering similar quality.
Mehlin & Sons may have been most well known for their “Inverted Grand” piano line. The Inverted Grand was based on the principal of placing a grand piano in a vertical position in an upright piano cabinet – ultimately a grand piano in and upright case. The Inverted Grand was an incredible sounding instrument and it sold very well in the early 20th Century.
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