Gibson TB-3 Mastertone #9549-77, the “Harry DeRousse”

Style 3, the least expensive model in Gibson’s prewar Mastertone line, was revamped in 1929.  The model’s straight-grained maple changed to mahogany, two concentric rings of white/black/white purfling were added to the back of the resonator, the brass tube-and-plate flange was replaced by a one-piece cast metal flange, and the headstock shape and inlay patterns also changed.  #9549-77 (see Gibson banjo serial numbers vs. factory order numbers) dates to the following year and remains in fully original condition.

The original owner of #9549-77 was Harry DeRousse (1909–1983).  Mr. DeRousse was a native of Iowa who moved to Michigan in the 1930s.

Photos courtesy of Paul DeRousse.