Pipe Organ Database

a project of the organ historical society

Methuen Organ Co. (1915)

Originally Ferris & Stuart (1859)

Location:

Residence: Edward F. Searles "Pine Lodge" / Presentation of Mary Convent
209 Lawrence St.
Methuen, MA 01844 US
Ballroom (later, Chapel)
Organ ID: 2115

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Status and Condition:

  • This instrument's location type is: Private Residences
  • The organ is unaltered from its original state.
  • The organ's condition needs attention, but in usable condition.
We received the most recent update for this instrument's status from Brad Engelland on July 21, 2022.

Technical Details:

  • Chests: Slider
  • 32 ranks. 1,657 pipes. 3 divisions. 2 manuals. 28 stops. 28 registers.
All:
  • Chest Type(s): Slider chests
  • Position: In center chambers at the front of the room. Facade pipes or case front visible.
We received the most recent update for this division from Database Manager on May 13, 2018.
Main:
  • Manuals: 2
  • Divisions: 3
  • Stops: 28
  • Registers: 28
  • Position: Console in fixed position, center.
  • Manual Compass: 56
  • Pedal Compass: 29
  • Key Action: Mechanical connection with pneumatic assists (i.e., Barker levers, etc.).
  • Stop Action: Mechanical connection between stop control and chest.
  • Console Style: Traditional style without cover.
  • Stop Controls: Drawknobs in horizontal rows on terraced/stepped jambs.
  • Combination Action: Fixed mechanical system.
  • Swell Control Type: Balanced swell shoes/pedals.
  • Pedalboard Type: Flat straight pedalboard.
We received the most recent update for this console from Database Manager on May 13, 2018.
Andrew Scanlon on May 12, 2021:

I visited and played this instrument on May 12, 2021. The organ is tall, narrow and visually quite imposing. I was surprised by how gentle the overall sound is. Even the full organ with reeds & mixtures is quite soft. The key action is completely functional and easy to play and all the couplers work.

Two stops, the swell Salicional 8' and the pedal Open Diapason 16' were completely silent. I don't know whether they were disconnected at some point. The tremulant also appeared to be non-functional. This entire estate, formerly known as "Pine Lodge," and currently the "Presentation of Mary Convent" is for sale.

The organ is generally in good condition, and almost completely playable, but does need tuning and other maintenance. On my visit, Sr. Janice Perrault indicated that the organ was played daily until 2 years ago, when most of the nuns of the Presentation of Mary were moved to another home in Hudson, NH. Only five nuns live on site in a separate "provincial house" in order to keep the property from being uninhabited. The newer portions of the convent/academy recently became home to the "Christo Rey" Catholic High School (formerly located at St. Mary's in Lawrence, MA). The nuns indicate they intend to vet buyers to be sure the historic property will be protected.

We received the most recent update for this note from Andrew Scanlon on May 12, 2021.

Database Manager on June 07, 2009:

Updated through online information from James R. Stettner. -- This was the installation of the Great, Swell, and Pedal portions of the Broadway Tabernacle Ferris & Stuart (1859) from New York City with tonal changes, additions and new casework.

We received the most recent update for this note from Database Manager on August 09, 2018.

Database Manager on October 30, 2004:

From Broadway Tabernacle, NYC. Rebuilt Methuen c. 1900. Former Great and Swell divisions.

We received the most recent update for this note from Database Manager on April 09, 2020.
Stoplist copied from the console April 13, 1989: Open In New Tab Original document from James R. Stettner. Originally published 2018-08-09
We received the most recent update for this stoplist from Database Manager on December 18, 2018.

Instrument Images:

Organ: PHotograph by Jim Lewis. Taken on 1972-10-22

Organ case and console: Photograph by Len Levasseur. Taken on 2010-01-25

Facade and upper case: Photograph by James R. Stettner. Taken on 1989-04-13

Console and lower facade: Photograph by James R. Stettner. Taken on 1989-04-13

Upper casework detail: Photograph by James R. Stettner. Taken on 1989-04-13

Upper casework detail: Photograph by James R. Stettner. Taken on 1989-04-13

Room organized as a chapel for the Presentation of Mary Sisters (the organ area is behind the pews on the right hand side): Photograph from an archival source: Digital Commonwealth, submitted by Andrew Scanlon. Taken approx. around 1960

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