Humble and Goins: Violin Making

Jim Humble

Jim Humble, of the Sequatchie Valley region, is regarded as one of Tennessee’s most skilled and sought after violin luthiers. He has been restoring violins for the public since the 1970s, and in 1982, he made his first violin. Since then he has built approximately thirty violins and done hundreds of repairs on bowed stringed instruments for symphony members and those in the classical and bluegrass community. Jim will teach his apprentice, Meredith Goins, the art forms of violin making, restoration techniques, and bow rehairing.

Meredith Goins

Meredith is an exceptional fiddler and has three years of experience restoring violins. She met Jim many years ago in Ooltewah, Tennessee, when the ¾-size violin Meredith’s family had purchased needed some work done to it. Meredith explains, “I believe it’s important to know how to restore instruments, so there are violins to pass on to generations to come. I feel in the community where I live, this is an art form that is near extinction, and I would like to be able to play a part in preserving this art form by learning from Mr. Humble, as well as plan on sharing it and passing it on to those in the future who have a desire to learn how to restore violins and make them.”

*This team is funded through a special partnership with the South Arts’ initiative In These Mountains: Central Appalachian Folk Art & Culture.