Santos Hernandez (Madrid, 1873-1943) started very early an apprenticeship at the workshop of Valentin Viudes where he worked only for a short time. After that he started to work in Granada at the workshop of José Ortega. Finally he went back to Madrid where he worked at the workshop of Francisco Gonzales. In 1893 he stopped to work as a luthier for five years because of the military service he has to absolve. During that period he was also in Cuba to fight in the Spanish-American war. In 1898 he left the army and opened his own workshop in ‘Calle Nicolas Salmerón’. In 1905 he started to work at the Manuel Ramirez workshop were he took over the position of Enrique Garcia (Garcia has gone to Barcelona). It seems that Hernandez was very much involved in the construction of Segovia’s guitar that was made at the Ramirez workshop in 1912.
After the death of Manuel Ramirez in 1916, Hernandez stayed there to work for the widow till 1920. In 1921 he opened again a new workshop in ‘Calle La Aduana’. The guitar has a head shape that was designed by Hernandez in the mid of the 1930’s. We can assume that the guitar was build around 1935. The dealer label inside the guitar states that the guitar was built in 1921. It was common at that time that instrument dealers changed the date of construction.
The spruce top is in good condition and basically free of cracks. Just beside the fingerboard there are two little stabalized cracks not affecting the sound nor the stability of the soundboard. Back and sides are made of rosewood. On the back you can find two well repaired cracks. The tuning-machines are old but probably not original. This guitar is a gem! The sound is very clear and brilliant and the basses are not too dominant. A great guitar from one of the most important luthiers ever lived.
|Construction year:||around 1935|
|Back and sides:||Rosewood|