Gruhn Guitars currently has for sale what is being described as the earliest known 1954 Fender Stratocaster (serial number 0100) with original “poodle” style hard case for $250,000. This is an instrument of great importance not only to musical instrument history but to music history as well.
“I have seen a vast number of fretted instruments during the 50+ years I have been in this business and this guitar spoke to me the moment I opened the case,” says George Gruhn. “Its significance goes far beyond its place in the history of musical instruments. This Stratocaster made an incredible mark on music history as well when it left the Fender factory and landed in the first owner’s hands at a music shop in El Monte, California. This is the earliest example of the most successful model electric guitar in the history of the instrument and is the guitar that launched a revolution.”
Fender Stratocaster 0100 is described as being in exceptionally fine condition. The neck date is 1/54 (January 1954) and the body date is 4/54 (April 1954). As is typical of the very earliest Stratocasters, the serial number is stamped on the tremolo cavity plate rather than the neck fastening plate as seen on later Fender instruments.