|16'||Double Open Diapason|
Andover Organ Company has completed the rebuilding of the organ in the First Parish Church. The organ was built by Hutchings-Plaisted and Company of Boston in 1883, their Opus 112. Unfortunately, the tracker action and console were replaced in 1969 by electric action and console. By 1985 the new electric and pneumatic components were malfunctioning. David E. Wallace, Inc. was chosen to return the organ to its original mechanical action. A new detached console was designed and built with a 30-note concave-radiating pedalboard and three new pipes were added to each of the Pedal stops. The pipework remained unchanged. In 1999 a member of the Parish offered to underwrite work on the organ including the restoration and repair of items that were not included in the 1985 retrackerizaton project.
In April 2003 Andover Organ Company removed the organ to their shop for renovation. The work included completely restoring the windchests and replacing the cracked and split chest tables with new voidless plywood tables to better withstand constant heating. A new console coupling mechanism was built along with a new mechanical key and stop action. The pipes were cleaned, repaired, and checked for proper speech and volume.
We did make a few tonal changes so that the organ could better serve the contemporary worship service. We made the 4' Violina and the 2' Flautina in the Swell larger in scale, which meant that the pipes could speak louder and with a better quality of tone that would give more support to singing. We added a Cornet at 2 2⁄3' and 1 3⁄5' pitches. This forms, when used with other stops, fine solo combinations and lends a reed quality when used with the entire swell chorus. Likewise, the Pedal 8' Violoncello was made larger to give the bass line a stronger foundation. We have maintained the orginal voicing style of the Hutchings-Plaisted Company in an instrument that is as viable today as it was in 1883.
On Saturday May 22 2004, a Rededication Concert was played by Ray Cornils, who has been organist at First Parish Church for seventeen years.