Our Company

Family :Joseph, Marilyn, Alice, Oliver and harps

Josephus Harps is Joseph Jourdain and Marilyn Rummel. We research and produce harps and harp related software, books, and cases.

Joseph Jourdain has been researching and experimenting with lever harps and their design since 1982. Joseph, who originally trained in industrial optics, designs and produces all our harps. He has studied the physics of the harp extensively and uses his knowledge and skill to craft beautiful instruments with superior acoustics. Reference to Joseph's work can be found in the Canadian Encyclopedia of music at the following link: http://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/harp-emc/ search for harp in Encyclopedia of music and then go to recent activities and building.

Partner Marilyn Rummel, as well as being a musician, teacher, and writer, is an experienced businesswoman with over 25 years of experience owning and operating her own businesses. She has published a beginner harp book as well as harp arrangements and original music. She teaches at home, at the Nanaimo Conservatory of Music and retreat harp workshops. She is also a performing musician available for weddings, special occasions and  concerts.  

We make all our harps and accessories in our shop in Duncan, Vancouver Island, in British Columbia, Canada. All our harps are available in Western maple, Black walnut, Mahogany, and Cherry. All are built with hand-cut, edge-glued, solid Sitka spruce sound boards for the best sound, all have tapered through-pins, brass bridge pins and brass eyelets.

We have been producing Wellspring Harps since 1997, and in that time they have gained a great reputation for their compact size, beautiful sound, and affordability. We also offer 38 strings harps for the professional with two new designs, the Heritage and the Dayspring. These harps have very rich acoustics with outstanding sound projection and tonality. In small size harps, we have the Traveller and the Therapy; both are quality instruments with real sound boards that you will be proud to own and play. We also make student harps in Western maple with Baltic birch ply sound boards for rental purposes.

Some other services include string analysis, (any stringed instrument), stringband designs, and troubleshooting for already built harps. Also available is the Stringband Manager, our widely used computer program, and a handbook of string design called The Folk Harp Stringband Manual.

If you are looking for your first harp we recommend that you read Buying a Harp from the menu. It will provide you with essential information about buying a new harp.

Pricing Issues

We believe the pricing of our products for its quality is very competitive because we have been able to take advantage of 5 important factors. They reflect our objectives, and our way of doing business. They are:

- Raw Material:
We do almost everything ourselves from blueprints, marketing, Internet and harp parts. We make our harps from scratch and buy lumber and supplies in bulk for the best prices from wood and hardware suppliers.

- Product Design:
Joseph's trips to the Folk Harp Society conferences in 84 and 86 convinced him (along with many others, of course) that the instruments could be improved significantly in tonality and design, and for cost-effective construction. He began by writing a computer program to calculate the various characteristics of string tension because to his way of thinking the strings were the heart of the harp. This is the Stringband Manager software that we now sell and is used by many, if not most, of the serious harpmakers in North America.

The harp design was next - the objective was a sound comparable to the best harps available, while being compact for portability, sturdy for reliability and affordable for new harpers. In 1997 we launched the new design in a production series called the Wellspring.

- Production Technology:
Technology is an important factor in productivity. It became clear that a good investment in tools and machinery was necessary. Little by little we have purchased all the machinery necessary for production. We now have a very well equipped and high-tech workshop geared for quality production. Because of technology we have been able to cut the building time to half of the original setup. The cost of a harp is largely labour, efficiency of design and productions technology are the single biggest factor in competitive pricing.

- Low Overhead:
We live and work in a small town. Here life is simple, no commuting - no traffic, no big taxes, no middle man.

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