Vintage Reuge Music Boxes

Published: September 1, 2021
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Charles Reuge, a watchmaker from the Val-de-Travers, settles in Sainte-Croix in 1865, and begins making pocket watches with musical movements. For most of the 19th century, the bulk of musical box production was concentrated in Switzerland, building upon a strong watchmaking tradition. The first musical box factory was opened there in 1815 by Jérémie Recordon and Samuel Junod. There were also a few manufacturers in Bohemia and Germany. The company Reuge Music still produces stunning mechanical music boxes that charm and captivate all music lovers. Endowed with a rich history dating back to the 1860s, the firm is an industry leader in both mechanical music and singing birds.

reuge music box 72 note


Charles started by manufacturing small watches with tiny musical box movements. The business went just fine, so his older son, Albert Reuge opened their first workshop. He continued his father work and made musical movements. Incredible as it may seem, the Reuge factory can be found at the same address in Sainte-Croix Switzerland, making an astonishing range of movements, from simple ones to multi tune of up to 144 notes.

Collectors' items

Vintage Reuge music boxes are valuable to collectors and new ones are desirable too, because of the name and fine detailing. These can be very expensive and cost thousands of dollars, even new. The cylinder type of music box remained popular until the late 1880s when the Germans developed the disc musical box.

Reuge music boxes are created in three collections: "1865", "Lounge" and "Studio", each with its own characteristics and styles. The"1865" collection is a classic line of great music boxes, horology and singing birds. Inlaid in the finest woods and precious metals they can be considered the best of the best.

Reuge states that "It takes three months to create a Reuge music box and that the mastery of thirty-four professions is needed to complete the various stages of production. The unique expertise of each step in the production process breathes life and soul into these musical boxes and singing birds.

Nowadays, the Reuge music boxes cover a lot of items, such as wedding music boxes, and jewelry music boxes. The materials that are used to make these exquisite items are very selective. Burr elm, walnut, rosewood and many other make these music boxes quite unique.

Most sought after

Popular Reuge music boxes include:

  • Musical Lipstick Carousel
  • music box edelweiss
  • dancing couple
  • birds
  • 72 note music box

The company is widely considered to be the world leader in the manufacture of traditionally made luxury music boxes, and their limited editions are known throughout the music box collectors' world.


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Vintage Reuge Music Boxes value and price guide

What's your Vintage Reuge music boxes worth in 2021? Here are some recently sold items with prices.

Item Title Date Price
Music boxes Reuge Music Box playing 3 Reuge Music Box Playing 3 Parts72 Note 08/2021 3 680.30
Music boxes REUGE Sublime harmony 144 Note REUGE Sublime Harmony 144 Note Swiss 07/2021 3 530.25
Music boxes Reuge Music Rare Lapis Lazuli Reuge Music Rare Lapis Lazuli Mechanical 08/2021 2 831.00
Music boxes Swiss Reuge Cylinder Music Box Swiss Reuge Cylinder Music Box 144 Note 07/2021 2 678.94
Music boxes New REUGE 72note Cavalleria New REUGE 72note Cavalleria Rusticana 09/2021 2 716.63
no pictureSee all sold items on eBay for more prices12/2021-.--

Reuge forum

"Ask questions or share your stories." - John, Fabcollectibles

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Susannah - November 18, 2021
I discovered a Ruege Dr. Fokker 1 plane with Santa as the pilot playing a Lillian Harvey song. It has a propeller that turns, a wheel that cranks up the music box, and wheels that it slowly turns upon. Any idea of when it would have been made? Thank you.
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JohnSusannah - November 28, 2021
Although I found some pictures, I'm afraid I don't know the production year. However, I do know it also has an incense cone.
David - October 13, 2021
I inherited a nice collection of music boxes. There are many Reuge. I need to sell them. Any help would be appreciated. Thank you
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JohnDavid - October 13, 2021
Prices can differ immensely, so best would be to try and find your boxes on eBay for some valuation, or offer them as a lot to an auction house (where they can determine value).
Jason - September 30, 2021
I have a Reuge Deluxe Bicentennial Music Box (5/100). 144 note (No. 200 Sublime Harmonie), plays 3 tunes. Top has inlaid Liberty Bell. Trying to get an idea of current value for insurance purposes, as I inherited it with my mothers passing.