Thursday, September 20, 2007

east coast organ tour

I will warn you right now. this is a very heavy photo post. But I have had the most amazing past four days. I was priviledged enough to travel with a group from my church to visit various organs and organ builders on the eastern seaboard. The amount I learned in just a few days was amazing. Most of you remember this post in November of last year. As we look to rebuild our precious friend, it was time to start picking hte builder of her new organ.

We were greeted with tremendous hospitality by family in Virginia. Remember how much I love Kansas? Oh my. Virginia is more than my poor heart can handle. We stayed in the country at a home built pre civil war. Mountains. Antiques. Deer in the yard. Yup. In the back yard as I went for a walk.


The view from my room.

I never realized the craftsmanship that has to go into an organ. I've always appreciated their sound and link it to so many events in my life. Growing up in my dad's church. My wedding. My children's baptisms. Every Sunday. It is a part of my fiber. But the detail I never appreciated.
The pipes are all hand pounded and the very fraction of an inch can change the sound dramatically.

Richards and Fowkes at Westminster Presbyterian in Knoxville, Tennessee.
Morning in Staunton, Virginia.

Pipe forms.


Every key is pulled by mechanisms inside the box of an organ. And did I mention that most of these builders use no screws in the entire organ? Not one.

Taylor and Boody organ in Staunton, Virginia.

Unfinished organ at Taylor and Boody in Staunton, Virginia.

Hand Tools.



Martin Pasi organ in Solesbury, Pennsylvania.
I promise there will be hand made goodness coming in the near future. A few things are under wraps, and a ton of things are just not quite done!!!




16 comments:

Alice said...

Pipe organs really are amazing creations, aren't they? I learned this when my neighbor bought one from a church that was being dismantled. He cut holes in his floor in order to install the largest of the pipes. He's a church organist and I am often fortunate enough to enjoy his practice sessions.

Anna said...

Oh, Heidi, what a wonderful way to learn about the majesty that is a pipe organ, and how happy I am to hear that your church will be able to replace the one lost in the fire. God has many plans yet for you and your congregation!

AM~Erica said...

Even though I am such a contemporary worshipper now, I still appreciate the beauty of pipe organs. The country looked beautiful, too! You should come check out the pipes on our organ one of these days...YES? Meet me in St. Louie (HA)!

Can't wait to see how much more crafty you can be since the craft-gene skipped me.

melissa said...

what an amazing trip you've been on- i don't know enough about organs- but they are really wonderful instruments. I learned to play the pipe organ in our local cathedral when I was a teenager. it was such a challenge! but such an honour to be allowed to play it.
thanks for the wonderful pictures!

mary said...

Incredible education. I had no idea the craftmanship involved.

nikko said...

Ah... Organs. Love them. One of the most serendipitous moments on our trip to France was happening upon a organist practicing in a centuries-old cathedral. I about melted into a puddle on the spot!

Your pictures are so beautiful. I love the one with the early morning mist. What a great trip!

Erin said...

Beautiful photos Heidi. I have a true love for the pipe organ. My Grandfather was an Organist and played every sunday at church until he finally stopped at the age of 92. I really wish I knew how to play it.

Virginia looks lovely.

XO :) said...

What beautiful country you were in to take in so much learning. Yeah for a nice setting to learn so much.

Ragged Roses said...

What beautiful photos, thanks for such an interesting post. Love the new banner too! Have a good weekend
Kim x

pink-petal-designs said...

Looks like a great trip, great pics too !
Sarah x

mommy to four j's said...

What a beautiful place . How fun to learn about the pipe organs glad you had just a great time,
Char

capello said...

omg, i love that bed.

did you know, i took organ lessons for six years when i was a kid? i rocked that instrument out.

Tracy said...

Very awesome! I had a professor at Pitt State (Dr. Marchant)... she was a fabulous organist. Those were good days and you reminded me of them. :) And how you blessed you are to tour such a beautiful part of the country!

Blessings. :)

Kat-in-a-flap. said...

HI Heidi,
I wish I could take you to Lincoln Cathedral in England now that is an organ !!!
The countryside alone would have soothed my soul on that trip,
Do you play the organ yourself ?
Nice to read about your trip,
Hope you are well and your family too,
Best Wishes Kat x

Chara Michele said...

What an amazing sounding trip! It had to be wonderful to learn about those organs. I hope that your church is able to replace the one lost in the fire.

Mrs.Kwitty said...

Great post Heidi--the organs are beautiful and I'll bet it was so cool to be able to learn so much about them and how they are made (no screws? wow!) Thanks for sharing--and I loved all the beautiful scenery and that bed--stop it! I want to sleep there so bad!
Smiles, Karen