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In 1963, J.W. Gallagher, a skilled woodworker, sawed a dreadnought guitar in half in order to figure out how it was made. J.W. had recently lost his job making scale-model airplanes and rockets when the Slingerland drum factory in Shelbyville, Tenn., hired him to set up a production line for their new Shelby guitar. The Shelby was an inexpensive guitar that served as Slingerland’s foray outside of drumstick making. J.W. and his son, Don, worked in the Slingerland factory for a few years, but J.W. wanted to build instruments with the same quality and care that he put into his furniture. So, in 1965, J.W. Gallagher built the first Gallagher guitar. The Gallagher Guitar Company has been producing quality handmade guitars ever since.