The following is an actual photo and original copy of a recent online auction.

this rose wood fife was made by CLOOS and CROSBY and is so marked it is also marked 7th ct inf above the makers name this regiment saw lots of action no soldiers name but nice regiment markings i tried to photograph these but they do not show up well they are however period done and show wear over the top of them. the end ferrels are coin silver or plate there is also wear marks that show a cheater was used at one time this is a really great example of a civil war fife


The instrument is marked Cloos Crosby. This means that the fife was made by George and/or Frederick Cloos and it's a Crosby model. In other words, modeled after a style of fife attributed to Walter Crosby of Boston. Crosby made his instruments from 1830 to 1872. Although Cloos did make instruments as early as 1862, there is no evidence that made fifes at that time or that he ever acquired a contract to produce military instruments. The bulk of his fife business was post-war, during the civilian fife and drum boom that continued into the 20th century. Like most Cloos fifes we've seen at auction, this one exhibits features which identify it as late 19th c. or early 20th c. Although difficult to tell in this photo, it appears that the finger holes are of varying size. This is characteristic of fifes made in the late 19th century (to date) and was apparently an attempt (a successful attempt) to extract tone of truer pitch expected by audiences of civilian corps. In addition, the equipment required to manufacture the tapered ferrules seen here was not patented until 1869, four years after the war. Since the physical characteristics of the instrument indicate a late 19th century manufacture, it is our opinion that the imprint of the 7th Ct Infantry is a forgery, and actually reduces the value of the instrument as an antique.