History of the Austin Organ Opus 2337

 

First Presbyterian Church has had four pipe organs since the present building was erected in 1851.  The current pipe organ was built in 1960 by Austin Organ Co., Hartford, Connecticut; Opus 2337.  The congregation and staff have diligently cared for this wonderful instrument of 3 manuals, 5 divisions, and 53 ranks of pipes. In 1992, 660 electro-pneumatic motors were replaced by Stuart Biza, who worked on the building of this instrument for Austin in 1960.  

In 2000 the Fourniture IV was removed from the Great and replaced by 4 ranks (244 pipes) moved from the Swell. These in turn were replaced by an equal number of new ranks from the Netherlands. The original Fourniture IV was refurbished in 2001 and 61 of its pipes were installed in the Choir. A 32 foot digital rank in the Pedal was installed in the Fall of 2002, dedicated to the long years of service of Joan M. Jones as music director, and in time for the church bicentennial in 2003.

Rodgers Masterpiece Signature 376 ConsoleL.A. Carlson Co., of E. Greenbush, NY, has maintained and tuned the Austin since 1997.  In February 2011 Leonard Carlson replaced the original 1960 Austin console with a Rodgers Masterpiece Signature 376 console.  This new console added 207 digitally sampled pipe ranks which can play with or without the Austin pipe organ.  The organ now contains 203 stops controlling the 2800 real pipes and the 11,755 digital pipes, in the Great, Swell, Choir, Solo and Pedal divisions.  An Antiphonal Organ division (for digital stops only) was added under the "Christ among the Doctors" window in the rear gallery. 

Three organists have served First Pres since 1960: Lewis B. Washburn [1960-1984], Phyllis H. Elmer [1984-1989], and Carl A. Bingle [1990-present].

The 2011 Austin/ Rodgers hybrid organ's specifications are available in this spreadsheet. xls Austin Hybrid Specifications

Specifications and history of the 1960 Austin Organ through 2003.