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Arthur Lusher (1871-1961)

A friend of English dulcimer player Sue Harris asked us to find out more about a dulcimer he owns which has a maker’s label inside. The label says it was made in 1947 by Arthur C. Lusher. The printed addresses on the label are 7 Murray Place, Cheshunt, Herts & Caxton Cottage, Diss, Norfolk. However, these have been crossed out and Clyst Hydon, Devon written in. His family in Diss were in the printing business – hence the fancy printed labels and the address in Diss: ‘Caxton Cottage’.

Arthur George Lusher turned out to be a coach body maker who made other musical instruments too. He was born in Diss in 1871, moved to Norwich by the age of eighteen and ten years later he was married in Battersea in London. Family members continued to live in Diss but there’s no sign that Arthur ever returned to his home town, moving on to Croydon for at least ten years as well as Cheshunt and then Devon for at least twenty years, where he died in 1961.
Another instrument made by Arthur Lusher has appeared – a flat-backed mandolin made in 1906 when he was living in Croydon.

Norfolk newspapers refer to a couple of members of the Lusher family playing musical instruments, but none have the initials A.G. The most intriguing one is a reference to a J.A. Lusher (although there’s no-one traceable with those initials) who played a dulcimer at a Young Men’s Friendly Society do in Diss in 1900 and who ‘cleverly made his own instrument’. This could well be a young Arthur George with an early, even first, instrument. Five years earlier, a Mr S. Lusher – who could have been Arthur’s brother Sydney, played a dulcimer solo for a Foresters’ tea and entertainment in Diss Corn Hall.

He was related through his mother’s family to another known dulcimer player, John Elsey, from Stuston.








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Photo descriptions & sources

Main photos:  Arthur George Lusher, c 1900,

Arthur Lusher, Mary Ann Lusher (nee Cooper)

a. Arthur Lusher dulcimer

b. Arthur Lusher dulcimer

c. Arthur Lusher dulcimer label

d. Mandolin made by A C Lusher

e. Mandolin made by A C Lusher

f. Mandolin label made by A C Lusher

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