This is the first of 2 dulcimers that I had built in the remembrance of my father, Walter L. Morgan. Dad was always supportive of my playing and loved for me to play "Flowers of Scotland." It was one of Dad's last wishes to replace a dulcimer of mine that had cracked. While looking for a builder, I came across Jack Larwa's site, http://www.dulcimercraft.com/ . There I saw his "Celtic" dulcimer. It was a teardrop model with a carved gargoyle head and carved Celtic knots as sound holes. I contacted Jack and asked if he could carve a lion head, to which he said he could. We chose paduak and western red cedar to give the dulcimer a red hue. With the lion head and knot sound holes this seemed the perfect remembrance piece.
Dad was a true Scot. He was raised by my great grandfather, "One Eyed" John Thomas Morgan. Great Grandfather lost his eye from a Confederate sharp shooter at Fredericksburg, during the War Between the States. He then joined Queen Victoria's Household Calvary. He finally settled down in Springfield, Ohio and raised a family. My Grandmother died a month after giving birth to Dad, and my great grandparents took to raising him for the first 5 years. Dad learned Gaelic before he spoke English and by age 5 knew the family history better than most of his elders. At 16, when Great Grandfather died, he became the family heir as Chieftain of the Aberach Morgans. Dame Margaret Lyons, the first woman senator in the Australian Parliament, use to refer to Dad as "The Red Lion" as it was an accoutrement or charge on one of the Morgan coats of arms.
Thus it was a design from Heaven. I know Dad would have been pleased. I have named it for him using his middle name, LeRoy.
Jack is not only a skilled lutherie, but a good soul and a pleasure to get to know. His instruments reflect his skill and his attention to detail and sound as good as they look. He uses a "French polish" finish which is absolutely beautiful. I can heartily recommend Jack and his dulcimers.