(April 1, 1886 – March 1976) was a Swiss-American who founded the Rickenbacker guitar
Adolf Rickenbacker was born in Switzerland
.He emigrated to the United States with older relatives after his parents died, settling in Wisconsin. He moved to southern California as a young man. He later Anglicized his name to Adolph Rickenbacker to capitalize on the popularity of his distant cousin, America's top Flying Ace Eddie Rickenbacker
Starting in the late 1920s, his Rickenbacker Manufacturing Company made metal bodies for the National String Instrument Corporation
. Through this connection, he met George Beauchamp
and Paul Barth, and in 1931 they founded the Ro-Pat-In Company. In 1932 they produced the first cast aluminum versions of the lap steel guitar
. Two years later the company was renamed the Electro String Instrument Corporation. By the time production ceased in 1939, about 2,700 Frying Pan
guitars had been produced.
Rickenbacker, not convinced of the guitar business's potential, continued manufacturing until 1953, when he sold his company to Francis Cary Hall, a forerunner of the Southern California electric guitar boom.
Adolph Rickenbacker died from cancer in Orange County, California in 1976 at the age of 90.
- of Rickenbacher/Electro String, from the website