Mountain Music Museum Acquires Rare Roy Acuff Fiddle; Will Be Featured On HUCKABEE TV Show
A rare fiddle that received national attention when it was mistakenly donated to a Goodwill store in Kansas City, will soon go on display at the Mountain Music Museum in Kingsport, Tennessee. The museum features artifacts that chronicle the history of regional music.
The fiddle, once owned by late country music legend Roy Acuff, was donated to Goodwill by one of the current owner's family members, who did not realize its historical significance. The organization initially decided to sell it through an online auction. Bidding reached $8200. When the fiddle's owner, Lamar Peek, saw media coverage of the auction, he contacted Goodwill and the organization returned the instrument. Grateful to have the fiddle back in his possession, Peek donated $1000 to Goodwill. Another donor gave $8000, anonymously.
"We weren't looking to make money by returning the fiddle; we just wanted to do the right thing as an organization," said Kevin Bentley, interim president and CEO of Goodwill of Western Missouri and Eastern Kansas. "It just shows that when you do the right thing without expectation, great things can happen. The donations will go to our GoodWORKS Career Resource Centers, which help people find jobs."
According to a sticker inside the fiddle, the fiddle was made for Roy Acuff by his uncle, Evart Acuff, in Maryville, Tennessee, in 1945. The Mountain Music Museum learned about it, through media reports.
"Roy Acuff is one of the great musical artists from East Tennessee, so we thought it would be great to include the fiddle as part of an exhibit," said Rick Dollar, the museum's executive director. "We reached out to Goodwill, and they forwarded a message to the owner. We are grateful to Mr. Peek for his generosity."
The museum plans to display the fiddle for one year, beginning in early May.
Peek will share his fiddle story on national television when he appears on "Huckabee" on the Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN) on Saturday, April 14, and Sunday, April 15, at 8/7c. Grammy-winning fiddle player Jim VanCleve, a member of country star Josh Turner's band, will play the fiddle on the show.
"The night before taping Huckabee, I was in the 'Roy Acuff' dressing room backstage at the Grand Ole Opry, where there are multiple pictures prominently displaying this instrument," VanCleve said. "To have the opportunity to simply play the instrument would be a great honor. But, to be asked to be the last person to play it, in that setting, before it goes into a display case at the Mountain Music Museum is certainly something I'll never forget! It was a great thrill and an honor to play one last tune on Roy's fiddle!"
Peek inherited the fiddle from his late brother, Bobby, who purchased it at a pawn shop in Alabama.
"My brother had a passion for violins and fiddles his whole life," Peek said. "I feel like he would be happy to see this fiddle displayed for people who have an interest in country music. This is my way of honoring him."
Acuff was named the first living inductee of the Grand Ole Opry Hall of Fame and was also the first country artist to receive the lifetime achievement award by The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, among other achievements.
Lamar Peek and his Roy Acuff fiddle will appear on "Huckabee" on the Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN) on Saturday, April 14, and Sunday, April 15 at 8/7c. For information about the show, visit www.tbn.org/huckabee. Information about the Mountain Music Museum is available at www.MountainMusicMuseum.org.