DEAR SUN SPOTS: I have a free upright MirrApiano brand piano to give away. It works fine and was tuned last year. It must be picked up because I cannot deliver it. Please call 576-4109. — No name, Lewiston

ANSWER: I had never heard of this brand so I looked it up and found that MirrApiano was made and patented in New York as well as Canada.

I also read the following that was found in an article titled, “1940-1949: Wartime restrictions place a heavy burden on the music industry.”

“One of the more creative and successful byproducts of war shortages was the Mirra-piano. Throughout the late ’40s and early ’50s, thousands of used 50″ uprights were available, but the majority of customers were interested in the new lower-profile spinets and consoles. Louis Bromberg, an employee of the Wissner Piano Co. of New York, had the idea of placing a mirrored box around the top of an old upright to make it look smaller. He patented the idea and licensed over a dozen manufacturers and rebuilders. Thousands of Mirra-Pianos were sold during and immediately after the war.”

So MirrApiano was a company that restructured the piano cases. They were also known to cut down and modify the case in order to make it smaller and look more like a spinet piano.

The article goes on to say that the piano doesn’t have a lot of value but I think it would be cool to own an instrument from that era if you are willing to take on moving it. You’ll also want to get the piano retuned again after settling it in its new location.

In the Rolodex, I have Joseph Meehan in Litchfield (582-1540); Rice’s Piano Service (ricespiano.com) in Alna (443-3372 or 350-9548-cell); and Alex Peppe of Alex’s Piano Service. His website is alexanferpeppe.com. To contact him, call 400-6009 or email him at [email protected]. Another option is Starbird Music in Portland. They can be reached at 775-2733. They also offer piano moving.

DEAR SUN SPOTS: I am working on family genealogy and would like to look up some of my family members who have passed away in Lewiston. Is there any access to the Lewiston Sun Journal’s archive of obituaries? — Robert, no town

ANSWER: Go to this website: https://www.sunjournal.com/obituaries/ and you can find the people you are looking for by typing their name into the search bar.

DEAR SUN SPOTS: In regard to the request for sewing machine repair in the Jan. 11 Sun Spots; sewing machine service is available through Pins & Needles in Farmington.  It’s also a great quilt and yarn shop. — No name, no town

ANSWER: The shop is at 157 Main St. Contact them at 779-9060.

DEAR SUN SPOTS: In response to the request to share winter reading in the Jan. 20 Sun Spots, I’m reading “Bleak House” by Charles Dickens, which I had read 50 years ago, and “The Sea-Wolf” by Jack London, which is new to me. — Jon, Auburn

ANSWER: Those are two great classics! I reread “Little Women” by Louisa May Alcott at Christmastime and really enjoyed it. Some stories endure forever.

This column is for you, our readers. It is for your questions and comments. There are only two rules: You must write to the column and sign your name. We won’t use it if you ask us not to. Please include your phone number. Letters will not be returned or answered by mail, and telephone calls will not be accepted. Your letters will appear as quickly as space allows. Address them to Sun Spots, P.O. Box 4400, Lewiston, ME 04243-4400. Inquiries can also be emailed to [email protected].


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