If you go to the MMD archives you will find several informative
messages about Zimbalist music boxes:
These boxes seem to fetch a fancy price, in the thousand dollar range.
This is certainly not because of the mundane Thorens movements in them,
but solely because of their silver casework. The boxes were designed
by Fred Zimbalist, a cousin of Ephraim Zimbalist, and were apparently
executed in India.
This web site, about a Zimbalist family squabble, gives you the
Fred-Ephraim connection, and it indicates that as of 1998 Fred was
alive and in a nursing home, suffering from Alzheimer's disease:
It looks like the Fred Zimbalist Music Box Company is still in business
though. This Cleveland phone number for the company was cached by
Google in 2005: 216-621-6566.
I'd say that, at $16 for a Zimbalist creation, you got a bargain!
Irondequoit, New York