Mechanical Music Digest  Gallery
You Are Not Logged In Login/Get New Account
Please Log In. Accounts are free!
Logged In users are granted additional features including a more current version of the Archives and a simplified process for submitting articles.
Home Archives Calendar Gallery Store Links Info
MMD > Gallery > Pictures > ThomasCoOrgan


Announcement: End-of-Year Fundraising Drive In Progress

Our End-Of-Year Fundraising drive is in progress. If you haven't contributed to the operation of the MMD in the last 12 months, this would be a great time to contribute. There's a PayPal link at the bottom of each page on the website.

If you aren't sure when you last contributed, please send me a note using the contact form at the bottom of this page and I'll look you up in my records.

Thank you for your generous support!
Jody

P.S. While your support is needed and appreciated, you do not need to contribute to be a subscriber. If you have subscribed and aren't receiving your Digest, please use the contact form at the bottom of the page and let me know. Thanks!

Thomas County Cylinder Organ
French Cylinder Organ
in the collection of
Thomas County Museum of History
Thomasville, Georgia 31792, USA
by Melissa Sanford - Thomas County Historical Society, 14 Dec 2007

Photographs

front3a.jpg (41 kb)
Fig. 1. Front view with panels removed.  The cabinet is
52" high, 36" wide, 24" deep (132 x 91 x 61 cm).

The Thomas County Historical Society and Museum of History in Thomasville, Georgia has in the collections a cylinder organ of circa 1855.  The organ was brought to Thomas County after the family who owned it moved from a plantation near Lake Miccosukee, Florida, to Thomas County, Georgia.  We understand that it was built with the intention of being an instrument for the home.

The organ is indicative of the kind of wealth that the cotton plantations in our area could produce and it has a local history, so we are quite interested in learning more about it and would love to have it in playable condition.

Our cylinder organ is missing the handle and several pipes.  We have not taken it all apart, but the bellows are still in the bottom of the cabinet.  It seems to be remarkably intact.

It has percussion.  You can easily see the tambourine and saucer bells played with two separate hammers.  We can operate the keys for the percussion and that usually gets quite a reaction from the school children who visit us.

With the organ are four pinned cylinders in two original boxes.  There is writing in what appears to be India ink: "Cylindre No. 1" etc.  Number 4 has some intriguing marks which appear to be sharps, flats and letter names of notes all along the length of the barrel in a line.  I could not find any names on the surface.

The pinned cylinders are 27-1/4" long and about 6" in diameter (it's hard to be precise when measuring over the pins).  There are 33 wooden keys which operate the pipes plus 2 metal keys which operate the percussion.

Two large L-shaped pipes of wood are in the rear of the case, 17 metal pipes in the back row (all stoppered); 20 metal pipes in the next row (8 of these are open); 7 stoppered, 14 open, 1 stoppered on the next row.  In the front are 10 trumpets (but one is missing, there should be a total of 11), paired with open pipes (3 of these are missing).

A list of songs, framed and attached to the inside of the top, indicate that there were 2-3 selections of dance music per cylinder.  As the organ was sold in France, the list is in French.

A label is affixed to the back of the organ.  I have not found any reference to the firm on-line.

We consider the cylinder organ to be an important piece and important to the interpretation of the antebellum plantation era in Thomas County, Georgia.  We would really appreciate any information about the instrument, its maker and sources for repairs or replacement parts.

Thank you!

Melissa Sanford, Thomas County Historical Society
14 December 2007

Photographs


18 December 2007

Home    Archives    Calendar    Gallery    Store    Links    Info   


Enter text below to search the MMD Website with Google
Loading



CONTACT FORM: Click HERE to write to the editor, or to post a message about Mechanical Musical Instruments to the MMD

Unless otherwise noted, all opinions are those of the individual authors and may not represent those of the editors. Compilation copyright 1995-2017 by Jody Kravitz.

Please read our Republication Policy before copying information from or creating links to this web site.

Click HERE to contact the webmaster regarding problems with the website.

Please support publication of the MMD by donating online

Pay via PayPal

No PayPal account required

                                     
Translate This Page

. .