The history of Rauen Guitars began in the basement of Denny Rauen`s townhouse in Park Forest, Illinois. The space was minimal (400 sq. ft.) but it worked! In late 1982 Denny was invited by Greg Bayles to set up shop in his store Make`n Music. With help from friend David Peterson, a finishing facility was set up in Gary, Indiana, and business grew quickly. Within about a year Denny moved the business into an old gas station in Steger, Illinois owned by Herman and Wanda Sperti. This would be the home of Rauen Guitars for the next five years. During this period the shop specialized in custom building guitars.
In 1987 moving the shop up to Milwaukee Wisconsin, Denny shifted the focus of his work to restoration and repair. He'd been building instruments for the better part of ten years and found the restoration and repair work to be more challenging as well as interesting. Working one on one with musicians and their instruments is a wonderful benefit of this work. In 2000 he purchased a building in the Historic Riverwest area of Milwaukee, Wisconsin todays home of Rauen Guitars. The shop, now with over 5000 sq. ft. makes it one of the largest facilities in the country dedicated to restoration, repair and setup of string instruments.