D'Addario

D'Addario - Fine Crafted Strings

Items 1 to 15 of 387 total

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Items 1 to 15 of 387 total

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The history of D'Addario stems from a miniture town in Italy named Salle.  You can walk its circumfirence in about 10 minutes, and jog across is diagonally.

 In the middle of the town is the church. It is in this church that countless generations have sought refuge and marked the milestones of their lives with their families. It is in this church that the oldest documents of the town still reside. One document marks the birth of a child; the baptismal form filled out by a Donato D’Addario in 1680, his occupation stated simply “cordaro” – the Italian word for “string maker.” The trade of the town seemed to be one of two things–you were either a farmer of the rich countryside or you made strings.

The D’Addario family was equal parts farmers and string makers. Both professions involved the use of the land and the animals of the region. The town boasted delicious fruits, vegetables, olive oil, and wine, not to mention fresh cheeses, proscuitto, sausages, bacon, lard, and salt pork. Before the introduction of synthetic substitutes, strings were made for lutes, guitars, harps, violins and other assorted musical instruments from sheep and hog gut. Creating fine strings from this material was a long, tedious process. It involved many different phases and the entire process took a week, Monday to Saturday, and began again every Monday morning with the dawn.

Beginning in 1936 and excluding only his time spent as an enlisted man in WWII, John D’Addario Sr., Charles and his wife, Anna’s, only son and youngest of five children, would work side-by-side with his father. At that time the company was renamed C. D’Addario & Son, and it would be John’s interest in alternative synthetic substitutes for the unreliable and messy animal gut that would mark another considerable milestone for the trade. The war had brought with it many technological advances, and it was Dupont™ that developed the first nylon monofilament for things like hair and toothbrushes, brooms., etc. In 1947, when Dupont™ shipped a sample to the D’Addario shop, Charles and John, Sr. immediately began working with it and found the diameter of the early nylon was perfect for treble harp strings.  

The late 1960s brought another generation of D’Addarios into the family business, with John D’Addario, Jr. the first addition to the fold. John D’Addario Sr.’s five children were no strangers to the string business. Just like the generations before them, they too had helped even as children. All can recount stories of warm nights spent sitting around the kitchen table, drinking coffee and watching The Honeymooners, helping to coil the strings and stuff them into marked envelopes.

When John D’Addario Sr. passed away in June 2000, he was surrounded by his wife, his children, and grandchildren. He had the distinct pleasure of watching his children succeed beyond his wildest expectations, and he was very proud. Today, thirteen family members, grandchildren and cousins, work for D’Addario & Company, Inc., and great steps are being taken by John, Jr. and James to pass down the family vision and tradition.

The biggest tradition, and the one least likely to receive any headlines, is D’Addario’s appreciation for their employees. A company that started with family has grown to require the talents of so many people working together towards the same goal. What has become important is to preserve the values of the family while encouraging the growth of the company. John, Jr. and James are convinced that it can be done.