Martin D-18

The Oliver Ditson company had it’s origins in a music publishing business started by a Boston bookstore, Batelle’s, in 1783. Later, the business expanded into selling instruments and “Everything in Music and Musical Merchandise”.

In 1916, the company commissioned Martin to produce a line of Ditson-branded guitars, including a model with a body wider than Martin had ever produced. Martin supplied Ditson until 1921, and again between 1923 and 1930.

After they were finally discontinued, Martin decided to continue with the large Ditson guitar, and created a new size category, “D”. This stood for “Dreadnaught”, a name borrowed from the British navy vessel HMS Dreadnaught.