CWRU Links

DREHER PIANO CO.

The DREHER PIANO CO. originated in 1853 when Baptiste Dreher (Sept. 1830-9 Apr. 1890) came to Cleveland and began to make melodeons. Dreher's grandfather, Meinard Dreher, was an organ builder in Illreichen near Ulm, Germany, and an acquaintance of Johann Sebastian Bach. By 1859, Baptiste Dreher had formed a partnership with Wm. J. Kinnard and had established a shop on Superior St. He was in business on his own by 1870, advertising himself as the general agent for Decker Bros. pianos. Ten years later he was selling organs as well as pianos. His sons Henry (8 Aug. 1864-19 Mar. 1929) and Oscar (1860-23 Feb. 1921) had joined the company by 1887, and the name was changed to the B. Dreher & Sons Co.; after their father's death, the sons changed the name to the B. Dreher's Sons Co., with Frederick W. Bruch as president, Henry as vice-president, and Oscar as secretary and treasurer. From ca. 1891-1912, they had a shop on Superior and another in the ARCADE; by 1912 Henry Dreher had become president of the company, which had moved to 1028 Euclid. In 1922 it moved to 1226 Huron Rd., where it sold phonographs, records, and music rolls in addition to instruments. By 1923 the company had become the Dreher Piano Co. Poor health forced Henry Dreher to sell the company in July 1928 to Chicago-based Lyon & Healy, which expanded its offerings and moved the store to 1007 Huron in the 1930s before closing the operation in 1953.