Hi all, Wayne Stahnke was inquiring if there was any connection
between Artrio-Angelus and Mel-O-Dee roll companies, because of the
similarities of word stencil numbers. I would actually doubt if there
was any type of cooperative effort to share stencils, for a couple of
If both companies were promoting the popular tune of the day, both
companies would be needing the same stencil at the same time. To use
the same stencil, the roll would need to have the same tempo and
placement of words in the exact same spot, which is highly unlikely.
Mel-O-Dee was a subsidiary of the Aeolian Corporation. Artrio-Angelus
was an independent corporation. I doubt if Artrio would contact Aeolian
to see if they could use some of their word stencils on Artrio's word
rolls -- Aeolian was way too busy to do that.
The number appearing at the beginning or end of a word roll stencil is
just the roll number. It appears so that the operator of the stencil
machine can conveniently know what roll that stencil is connected to,
so that it can be placed back in the correct stencil drawer, once it
is finished being used. It is usually placed with an end-tab with the
roll number on it, rubber-banded around the stencil, so that it can be
placed and retrieved easily the next time it is needed.
Two exceptions that I can think of to this above-mentioned situation is
that the Weile Company, maybe a subsidiary, or an in-house arm of the
early Imperial Roll Company did sometimes issue an Imperial Roll that
had an "X" as a part of the roll number and it was the exact same roll
and stencil as the Imperial release. I have only seen two Weile rolls,
so I am uncertain if this was a promotional gimmick, getting around a
contractual stipulation, or someone bought the rights to select titles.
The other situation is where QRS has produced Mexican rolls and has
sent them down to Mexico, where the purchaser has distributed them to
his friends. All rolls were instrumental, though, so there were no
stencils involved, and the owner's label appeared on the box and
leader. My two cents.