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Celebrated black ragtime pianist’s home to be opened
By Associated Press
Published September 21, 2016
The Blind Boone House. The home will be open to the public from 2-4 p.m. Sunday for the first time since the renovations began in 2001. (courtesy Allison Collins / Colombia Missourian News)

The Blind Boone House. The home will be open to the public from 2-4 p.m. Sunday for the first time since the renovations began in 2001. (courtesy Allison Collins / Colombia Missourian News)

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) A restored 1904 piano will be the focus at the dedication of a celebrated ragtime pianist’s home in Columbia.

The Haines Brothers piano was one of the practice pianos for John William “Blind” Boone, The Columbia Missourian reported (http://bit.ly/2cM1xby ).

Boone lived in the Columbia home from 1889 until his death in 1927. Boone, who was blind almost from birth, became one of the first black artists recorded by the QRS piano roll company, performing 11 selections while a machine punched the notes on the roll, according to The State Historical Society of Missouri.

Steven Fair, an independent piano technician and a member of the Piano Technicians Guild, repaired the piano so it would be playable. Kristopher De Tar, a part-time piano rebuilder, also worked on the restoration.

“I almost said, `It can’t be fixed,”’ Fair said.

It will be at the center of the John William “Blind” Boone Home, which will open for the first time Sunday since undergoing renovations begun in 2001.

The Boone County Historical Society will present a plaque marking the house as historic.

J.W. "Blind" Boone played his ragtime music on this practice piano, a 1904 Haines Brothers model.  (Photo by Allison Collins / Colombia Missourian News)

J.W. “Blind” Boone played his ragtime music on this practice piano, a 1904 Haines Brothers model. (Photo by Allison Collins / Colombia Missourian News)

Fair says the Sharp End Heritage Committee will recognize the house as part of the African American Heritage trail. It will be the second site on the trail in Columbia.

The John William “Blind” Boone Heritage Foundation will manage the home, which will be available for community gatherings and small, private events.

A restored 1904 piano will be the focus of a celebrated ragtime pianist’s home.

The Columbia Missourian (http://bit.ly/2cM1xby ) reports that the Haines Brothers piano was one of the practice pianos for John William “Blind” Boone.

Boone grew up in the Columbia home from 1889 until his death in 1927.

Steven Fair, an independent piano technician and a member of the Piano Technicians Guild, repaired the piano so it would be playable.

It will be at the center of Boone’s home, which will open for the first time Sunday since undergoing renovations beginning in 2001.

The Boone County Historical Society will present a plaque marking the house as historic.

Fair says the Sharp End Heritage Committee will recognize the house as part of the African American Heritage trail.

Categories: Music | National | News
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