Keefer, E flat tuba, 3 piston, c.1916


Tag #: 200803
Serial #: 21215

Bell Diameter Bore Size Height
15 7/8″ .650″ 30 3/4″


“BRUA C. KEEFER MFG. CO. / MAKER / WILLIAMSPORT PA / HIGHEST GRADE / 5643” on bell. “21215” on 2nd valve. Ornate floral engraving on bell, bottom bow guard, first branch guard, and ferrules.

4 thoughts on “Keefer, E flat tuba, 3 piston, c.1916”

  1. mary green said:

    hi! I am in possession of one of these tubas and I was wondering what it is worth my email is….if you would be so kind to email me the value of it I truly would appreciate it. Thank You, Mrs. Green

    • Hi Mary! In order to get an accurate value of your instrument we would need to see the instrument. Please send pictures of the full front, full back, close up of engraving on bell, close up of the valve section, and a close up of any damage to the instrument (if there is any). Send those pictures to Vincent Simonetti at Thank you!

  2. Jessica A. De Wire said:

    I love this horn! I have a 1918 and she looks almost identical to yours. My extended family lives outside of Williamsport, PA and the old gal was biding time in my Aunt’s attic until she discovered my obsession with old horns. It’s a great story: she told me she had an old tuba around and I should come visit and take it home to Puget Sound with me. I assumed t was a fiberglass sousaphone because my Uncle used to play and I was pretty excited about it! I had learned about the Keefer and Distan horns and the significance of Williamsport in my quest to know the history of brass instruments in north America. Never did I imagine the tuba my Aunt was holding on to was SUCH a piece of history! I gasped and swooned when my cousin brought it down from the attic. It’s in beautiful condition with few dents. The silver has worn away in places telling me it was a much used and loved horn. The serial number on the second valve is 7015.

    I don’t have a case, of course, and I keep her seated on her bell in my living room. I like to flip her over and give ‘er a toot pretty often. She’s more of a displayer than a player as I think the tuning is probably near to A430(?) and I’m not sure the mouthpiece (24AW)I have is the right choice.

    Do you have a mouthpiece suggestion?

    Is it ok to let her rest on her bell?

    The silver tarnishes as she is out on display. Do I dare polish her or will I just remove more silver. I did polish her once when I first brought her home… goodness she was stunning.

    Thank you for posting your collection. It’s impressive. And cheers to you my brass loving friend.


    • Hi Jessica! It sounds like you’ve found a lovely instrument. We’re happy to do our best to answer your questions. It sounds like your mouthpiece is definitely too big. Ideally you’d want an Eb mouthpiece, but they can be harder to find. Resting the instrument on her bell should be fine, but you’ll want to make sure that it’s braced well (up against a wall would be a good choice). You can absolutely polish the instrument. Any high grade silver polish should be just fine. Enjoy your lovely instrument!

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