For many years I built and repaired stringed instruments of all kinds professionally. Now retired, I've taken up the making of cigar box instruments like those on display here. A quintessentially American art form, cigar box fiddles, mandolins, banjos, and especially guitars, have been around for nearly two hundred years, appearing shortly after the introduction of the modern wooden cigar box in the 1830s. My gggrandfather, Robin Rose, carried a cigar box fiddle with him while fighting in the Civil War, and my ggrandfather on my father's side, William Tecumseh Sherman Rose, brought a cigar box guitar with him when he moved (along with his first cousin - and my ggrandfather on my mother's side - Stonewall Jackson Powers) from Wise County, Virginia to Camden-on-Gauley, WV in 1895. I continue to build my cigar box instruments by hand, much as my forebears did, starting with a used wooden cigar box, an oak or maple board and strings. But while continuing to pay homage to my Appalachian forebears, I have also incorporated the tools and techniques acquired over a lifetime's work as a modern luthier, introducng improvements I am confident my relatives would have appreciated like geared tuners, modern fretwire and even electronics, as well as more subtle internal changes that give my instruments more acoustic volume and tone. While ever mindful of the history and traditions of my craft, I am nonetheless continually looking for ways to improve upon the performance and playability of my instruments, for just as was true of those built by my relatives so long ago, these are works of art meant to be put to work.