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American Banjo Maker

William L Lange made a range of mainly Tenor and Plectrum Banjos in the late 19th / early 20th century after purchasing the Buckbee factory (Second Ave. , New York) in 1897 with William Rettberg with whom he formed a partnership which lasted until 1922.

The Orpheum was launced as a Tenor in 1915 and a plectrum version in 1918 followed by a 5-string.

In 1920, he designed the Paramount which continued to be made between 1921 and 1935. In 1922 William Lange took sole control of the company. The company went out of business in the early 1940s but Orpheum Guitars were continued to be distributed by Maurice Lipsky from 1944 to the 1960s.

Any 5-string Paramount is likely to be a re-necked 4-string although a very few were made by the factory .

Orpheums have been made in Asia since 2001 and distributed by Tacoma Guitars