- acoustic guitars
Stuart Mossman started making acoustic guitars in 1965. He had experimented with bracing patterns on at least 50 prototypes before starting SL Mossman Guitars in the late 1960s. His factory was based in Strother's Field outside of Winfield, Kansas. Mossman concentrated on high end flat-top dreadnought acoustics, noticing a gap in the market at the time and introduced his first production models in 1970. These were of equivalent quality to Martins but priced slightly lower.
The company expanded and by 1975 was making 100 guitars per month when a fire seriously damaged the factory. To rebuild and expand the factory Mossman took out a loan and entered into a distribution agreement with C.G. Conn which promised to streamline the distribution of Mossman guitars through Conn's dealer network. Production was increased and by 1977, Conn had a stockpile of 1,200 Mossman guitars in their Nevada warehouse ready for distribution. Unfortunately this warehouse was not climate controlled - which was fine for cheaper plywood guitars but the solid wood Mossman guitars suffered from the change from hot daytime temperatures to freezing cold at night. This caused cracks in the finish and bodies and led to a lawsuit between Conn and Mossman over responsibility for the damages. Cash flow problems from this lawsuit, meant Mossman had to lay off most of his staff and downsize his operation. In 1979 he was down to a few staff and a handfull of instruments per month and continued on this smaller scale until he sold the company to an ex-Mossman employee Scott Baxendale in 1986.
Baxendale moved Mossman to Dallas and then sold the company to John Kinsey and Bob Casey in 1989. Kinsey & Casey moved Mossman to Sulphur Springs, Texas, where it continued (the website was last updated around 2000). Stuart Mossman died in 1999.
Source: Mossman catalog 1975