This is the nicest late 1930s Gibson archtop we have seen in years. Gibson's L-50 model went through several revisions from the early 1930s to the 1960s, but to most fans of Gibson 16-inch archtops this late '30s version is the most highly regarded. The reason is that unlike versions of this same model from a few years later, in 1939 the L-50 was still given a carved spruce top and carved maple back, much like the more expensive L-7. With its sunburst top, small narrow f holes and dot inlays on the fingerboard, this one looks like a budget version of a late 1920s L-5. Other than the body shape bears almost no relation to the '50s and '60s laminated L-50s that followed.
This example is also in excellent cosmetic and structural condition with no cracks to the body or neck. The tuners, frets, and pickguard are original, as is the tailpiece, although the bridge is probably somewhat later than the rest of the guitar. The finish is original and in fine shape and the frets have almost zero wear. The neck has a rounded V-shape and is nice and straight. The truss works as it should. The Geib Redline case is in equally clean condition although the handle has been replaced.