Original Piano Maker(s)

Heinrich Engelhard Steinweg (1797-1871), and his sons

Date Established


Original Location(s)

New York City, New York

Notable Dates

  • c. 1851/1852 — Steinweg and his children changed their German names to sound more American, and subsequently became Steinway.
  • 1855 — Steinway awarded a gold medal at the New York American Fair for their square piano.
  • 1856 — Steinway began making grand pianos.
  • 1862 — Steinway began making upright pianos.
  • 1866 — Steinway Concert Hall opens on E. 14th Street; the building eventually serves as the company's headquarters.
  • 1867 — Awarded medal at the Paris World’s Fair.
  • c. 1870s — Steinway’s operation moves to Astoria, Long Island, New York.
  • 1925 — Steinway Hall relocates to W. 57th Street until 2014(the new one is currently being built and will be located on the Avenue of the Americas).

Notable Dates (cont.)

  • 1955 — Henry Ziegler Steinway (1915 – 2008), son to Theodore E. and great-grandson of Henry E. Steinway, became president of the company (holding that position until 1977 where he then became chairman until he retired in 1980); he was the last family member to run Steinway & Sons.
  • 1972 — Steinway sold to CBS, Inc.
  • 1985 — CBS, Inc. sold to an American investment group, known as Steinway to Steinway Musical Properties.
  • 1995 — Steinway Musical Properties merged with Conn-Selmer, Inc., renaming the company Steinway Musical instruments.

Innovation(s) / Patent(s)

  • 1859 — Henry Steinway, Jr. (1831-1865) awarded patent for the over-stringing of grand pianos.
  • 1868-1885 — Theodore Steinway earned more than 40 patents; an awarded in 1875 for ‘Improvement in Grand Piano-Forte Action’ is attributed to bringing modern action to the grand piano.

Current Owner(s)

Steinway Musical Instruments, Inc., an American investment group.
End of Article

Page Sources

Hoover, Cynthia Adams.  "The Steinways and Their Pianos in the Nineteenth Century."  Journal of the American Musical Instrument Society.  Vol. VII, 1981” pg. 57.  AmericanHistory.  Web.  21 Nov. 2015.
Steinway & Sons.  "The Making of Steinway Model B Grand Piano."  Online Video Clip.  YouTube.  YouTube, 15 Sept. 2015.  Web. 27 Feb. 2016.  Standard YouTube License.
Additional References:
  • Barron, James.  Piano: The Making of a Steinway Concert Grand.  New York: Times Books Henry Holt and Company, LLC, 2006.  Google Books.  Web.  21 Nov 2015.
  • Ratcliffe, Ronald, and Stuart Isacoff.  Steinway.  San Francisco: Chronicle Books LLC, 1989.  Google Books.  Web. 21 Nov. 2015.
  • Hoover, Cynthia Adams, and Edwin Good, eds.  "William Steinway Diary Project."  American History.  Smithsonian National Museum of American History, n.d.  Web.  21 Nov. 2015.
  • "Over-Stringing of Grand Piano."  Google Patents.  IFI CLAIMS Patent Services, n.d.  Web.  21 Nov. 2015. 
  • "Improvement in Grand Piano-Forte Actions."  Google Patents.  IFI CLAIMS Patent Services, n.d.  Web.  21 Nov. 2015.