Identified through online information from Lyndsey Hawn. -- Rebuild and modifications to existing organ.
The opening recital on the newly rebuilt pipe organ in the Huntingdon First United Methodist Church, 5th & Mifflin Streets, will take place this coming Sunday afternoon, October 26, 1975 at 4 o'clock, when Prof. Donald S. Johnson will perform a one-hour program which the public is invited to attend. Nearly four decades ago a new pipe organ was installed in First Church by the organ building firm of M.P. Moller, Inc., of Hagerstown, Maryland. This three manual and pedal instrument has served well over the years, but in recent years it had become increasingly evident that fatigue and age were taking their toll of the thousands of leather valves in the individual pipes of the organ. Accordingly, in late 1974 a contract was entered into with the Moller firm (celebrating its 100th Anniversary in 1975) to rebuild the organ. The entire instrument was removed from the church in May and returned to the organ builder's factory where wind- chests were stripped down to bare wood and completely refitted with a polyurethane derivative used in the valves. Because of the return to organ building principles of the classical period, which has swept this country since the end of the Second World War, it was also deemed necessary to tonally update the organ in First Church. Thus eight new ranks replaced certain existing ranks from the old organ, and many of the old expressive ranks were rescaled and revoiced to a more classic mode There are now twenty-nine "STOPS" (ranks of pipes), a set of chimes, a harp-celesta, and twenty couplers. This patient, careful fusion of old and new elements has affected three happy results: a magnificent tone, an extended artistic range allowing variant performance of works from all eras of organ literature, and a total savings of nearly one-third of the cost of a comparable all-new pipe organ. The work was completed in mid-July 1975.