Saw and played this instrument May 9, 2021. The organ is in good working condition. The church itself has changed hands several times. It is currently the "Bethesda Missionary Church." They use the organ occasionally though it appears most of their music is led by piano, vocal, keyboard, drums, etc. Though from the outside one might think the church is closed (partially because the entire complex is enclosed in a large fence with gates and there is no signage), the congregation was warm and friendly and appreciative of hearing the organ. My thanks to Craig Seaman of Andover Organ Company for the arrangements.
"Organ built by James E. Treat & Co., in 1889, financed by E. F. Searles, and from 1890 until 1904, the exhibition organ of James E. Treat & Co. and the Methuen Organ Co., in their building next to the present Music Hall. In 1904, Mr. Searles gave the organ and edifice to the congregation. Electrified by E. M. Skinner in 1948 (utilizing an ugly Aeolian console), the organ lost several fine stops and the action became so unreliable that it was "retrackerized" by the Andover Organ Company in 1962. The original console was rebuilt, the Pedal and stop action is electric, and tonal changes were accomplished with the funds available.
"A recital booklet for December and January 1890 indicates that the case was designed in pure Corinthian by Henry Vaughan, the console was six feet detached, and that the "pneumatic motor" was applied to the lowest octave of the Swell. The pedals were flat, the couplers were over the Swell manual with the combination pedal labels, and the swell pedal and Tremolo pedal were at the far right." (Boston Organ Club Newsletter, May 1966)
Status Note: There 1995
Electrified by E. M. Skinner 1948; retrackerized by Andover 1962, #46, 2-27.
Console showing concealable drawer with setter mechanism: Photograph by Andrew Scanlon. Taken approx. May 2021
Side of console, showing similarity with Methuen Music Hall console woodwork: Photograph by Andrew Scanlon. Taken approx. May 2021
Case woodwork detail, center, directly behind console: Photograph by Andrew Scanlon. Taken approx. May 2021
Plaque mounted on nave wall memorializing the church's benefactor, Edward F. Searles, 1905: Photograph by Andrew Scanlon. Taken approx. May 2021