Mechanical Music Through the Ages

A collection of Mechanical Music and Arcade Machines – highlighting examples of the development in mechanical entertainment over time.

Herephon 1883 – (German)

The Herephon was patented in 1883 by Charles F. Pietschmann & Sonne. This company was pursued for patent infringement by the makers of the Ariston – Paul Ehrlich who eventually won his cause. The Herephon distinguishes itself by having a square punched music disc – with cut out corners for handling – and the actual mechanism does the rotation, driven by the crank handle. The Herephon contains 24 notes and plenty of musical arrangements were made over the years. The top rotating disc of the Herephon has a picture stenciled on it depicting cherubs and other musical scenes. The tonal quality was similar to that of an accordion. The Herephon was made up until around 1911.