In 1979, after 5 years of building banjos with the Arthur E. Smith Banjo Company, Kate Spencer decided to start Maple Leaf Music in Brattleboro, Vermont. After several moves around town, the shop settled at 23 Elliot Street in a beautiful Victorian building with original tin ceilings. Over the next 33 years Spencer worked to establish the shop as a hub for fine stringed instruments, and in recent years, with an increased presence due to the internet, Maple Leaf Music has become not only one of the premier small music shops in New England, but in the country.
In June of 2012 longtime Maple Leaf employee Christian Glines purchased the business from Spencer, upon her decision to retire. Glines remains faithful to the original concept of a high quality stringed instrument shop, and since taking over has put an increased emphasis on Vermont based builders, such as Whetstone Guitars, Fielding Banjos, and Rigel Mandolins. He also re-established the electric guitar department, featuring a range of guitars, boutique pedals, and amplifiers.