Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church - New York City
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Church of Our Lady of Perpetual Help
(Roman Catholic)

321 East 61st Street
New York, N.Y. 10065

The Parish of Our Lady of Perpetual Help was organized in 1886 for the Bohemian Catholics who had moved to the upper part of New York City. Located on East 61st Street near Second Avenue, the church was on the southern outskirts of Yorkville, in an area with a large number of Bohemians. The church was run by the Redemptorists, who built a Romanesque-style church designed by Henry Bruns costing $40,000 that opened on August 7, 1887. A school was built in 1907, administered by the Sisters of Notre Dame.

For many decades, Our Lady of Perpetual Help was a thriving church that attracted members from all parts of the metropolitan area. Masses were offered in both Czech and English. Over time, many parishioners moved away or grew old and infirm, resulting in a greatly reduced membership. By the early 1990s only about 50 registered parishioners remained and the building began to fall into disrepair. A leaky roof closed the upper church but Masses were moved to a more modest chapel in the basement. It was no surprise when the Archdiocese decided that the church would be torn down and replaced with a residence for retired priests. The last Mass in the church was held on Easter Day 1998, and the church was razed. The planned retirement home was never built.
Scultetus & Mantel
New York City (c.1900)
Mechanical action
2 manuals, 16 stops, 16 ranks

The organ in Our Lady of Perpetual Help was built c.1900 by Scultetus & Mantel, an organbuilding concern formed by the partnership of Jacob Scultetus and John Mantel in New York City. It was reported that this organ was purchased by a private collector prior to the demolition of the church in 1998.
Great Organ (Manual I)
  Open Diapason  
  Flute Harmonic  
2 2/3
  Viola da Gamba  


Swell Organ (Manual II) – enclosed
  Open Diapason  
  Stopped Diapason  
  Dulciana       Tremolo  
  Flute Traverso          


Pedal Organ (not listed)
Couplers (not listed)
    Great to Pedal    
    Swell to Pedal    
    Swell to Great    
Pedal Movements (not listed)
    Balanced Swell Pedal    
     The Catholic Church in the United States of America: Undertaken to Celebrate the Golden Jubilee of His Holiness, Pope Pius X, Vol. III. New York: The Catholic Editing Company, 1914.
     "Before the Wreckers Come, Lilies and Hymns of Hope; Beloved Manhattan Church Celebrates Last Mass," The New York Times (Apr. 13, 1998).
     Dunlap, David W. From Abyssinian to Zion: A Guide to Manhattan's Houses of Worship. New York: Columbia University Press, 2004.
     Fox, David H. A Guide to North American Organbuilders (Rev. ed.). Richmond: The Organ Historical Society, 1997.
     Smith, Rollin. Stoplist of Scultetus & Mantel organ (c.1900).
     Shelley, Thomas J. The Bicentennial History of the Archdiocese of New York 1808-2008. Strasbourg: Éditions du Signe, 2007.

     Shrine of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton web site. Exterior and interior.