St. Mark's Church-in-the-Bowery - New York City (photo: Churchcrawler)
 

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St. Mark's Church-in-the-Bowery
(Episcopal)

131 East 10th Street at Second Avenue
New York, N.Y. 10003
http://www.stmarksbowery.org


Organ Specifications:
III/36 Chester A. Raymond (1952)
III/33 M.P. Möller, Inc., Op. 3755 (1924)
III/36 J.H. & C.S. Odell, Op. 247 (1888)
• III/30 Henry Erben (1854)
II/18 Henry Erben (1846)
II/17? Henry Erben (1825)


The "bouwerie" was Dutch governor Peter Stuyvesant's farm, and his private chapel used to stand on this site—making this the oldest site of continuous worship in Manhattan. This church was erected 1795-99, with a Greek revival steeple added 1828 and an Italianate portico completing the structure in 1854.

Originally a church of Manhattan's elite, St Marks became a progressive force in the neighborhood both socially and culturally. Supportive of immigrant, labor and civil rights, the church was a meetingplace for Black Panthers and Young Lords, and launched the first lesbian healthcare clinic.

 
Dancers at St. Mark's  
Poets like W.H. Auden (who was a parishoner), William Carlos Williams, Edna St. Vincent Millay, Amy Lowell, Carl Sandburg, Kahlil Gibran, Allen Ginsberg, Patti Smith and Jim Carroll have all read here; since 1966, the St Marks Poetry Project has organized poetery events. The Danspace project has featured dance legends like Isadora Duncan, Martha Graham and Merce Cunningham. Sam Shepherd's first two plays were produced here, and Andy Warhol screened his early films. The church served as the setting for a wedding and a funeral in the film The Group.

The St. Marks Churchyard is the final resting place for such famous occupants as former governor and vice president Daniel Tompkins, who abolished slavery in New York; Commodore Perry Matthew Perry, who forced Japan to accept U.S. trade; and New York Mayor Philip Hone. Peter Stuyvesant himself is buried under the church, and six generations of his descendants are also found here. Department store pioneer A.T. Stewart, whose store filled the block between 9th and 10th streets east of Broadway, was originally buried here in 1876, but on November 6, 1878, his body was snatched and held for $200,000 ransom. The widow eventually regained possession of the corpse in 1881, after bargaining the kidnappers down to $20,000.

In July 1978, a devastating fire destroyed the church interior and organ. After several years of rebuilding and restoration, the building reopened in 1983. The site is officially listed on the National Register of Historic Places and was designated a New York City Landmark in 1966.
               
 
  Daily News (July 29, 1978)
Chester A. Raymond
Princeton, N.J. (1952)
Electro-pneumatic action
3 manuals, 49 registers, 35 stops, 36 ranks





In 1952, organbuilder Chester A. Raymond was engaged to rebuild and enlarge the 1924 Möller organ. Chests were releathered, and most of the existing pipework was reused. The reed stops were revoiced, and tonal changes were made through additions and eliminations. The Echo chest was moved to the gallery organ, where four ranks of mutation stops were added to the unenclosed Great organ. Mutations were also added to the Choir, and preparations were made for the future addition of a four-rank mixture in the Swell. The Pedal division was enlarged to fifteen stops, and a new console was provided. David F. Hewlett, organist and choirmaster, designed the specification.

The church interior and organ were destroyed by fire in 1978.
               
Great Organ (Manual II) – 61 notes, partially enclosed
8
  Open Diapason *
61
2 2/3
  Twelfth *
61
8
  Harmonic Flute
73
2
  Fifteenth *
61
8
  Doppel Flöte
61
    Grave Mixture II ranks *
122
8
  Gamba
61
8
  Tromba
73
8
  Gemshorn
61
4
  Tromba (fr. 8')
4
  Octave *
61
   
Chimes
20 bells
4
  Flute
61
       
4
  Harmonic Flute (fr. 8')
   
* unenclosed
               
Swell Organ (Manual III) – 61 notes, enclosed
16
  Lieblich Gedeckt
85
2
  Flageolet
73
8
  Open Diapason
73
   
Mixture IV ranks
preparation
8
  Gedeckt (fr. 16')
16
  Contra Oboe
85
8
  Viole d'Orchestre
73
8
  Trumpet
85
8
  Salicional
73
8
  Oboe (fr. 16')
8
  Voix Celeste (TC)
61
4
  Clarion (fr. Trumpet)
4
  Octave
73
    Tremulant  
4
  Flute
73
       
 
     
 
     
Choir Organ (Manual I) – 61 notes, enclosed
8
  Melodia
61
2
  Piccolo
61
8
  Dulciana
61
1 3/5
  Tierce
61
8
  Unda Maris
61
8
  Clarinet
61
4
  Flute
61
    Tremulant  
2 2/3
  Nazard
61
       
               
Pedal Organ – 32 notes
32
  Resultant
8
  Violoncello (fr. Violone)
16
  Open Diapason
32
4
  Octave
32
16
  Bourdon
44
16
  Bombarde
32
16
  Violone
44
16
  Contra Oboe
SW
16
  Lieblich Gedeckt
SW
8
  Tromba
GT
8
  Octave
32
4
  Tromba
GT
8
  Major Flute (fr. Bourdon)
    Chimes
GT
8
  Gedeckt
SW
       
               
M.P. Möller, Inc.
Hagerstown, Md. – Opus 3755 (1924)
Electro-pneumatic action
3 manuals, 40 registers, 33 stops, 33 ranks


From the announcement in the April 1924 issue of The Diapason:
"The console is detached, the stops being controlled by R.C.O. type draw knobs placed in the jambs, and the couplers controlled by oscillating tablets above the swell keyboard. Twenty-three couplers and twenty-eight adjustible combinations, not moving the knobs but shown by electric indicators, as well as other modern accessories, complete the specification.
               
Great Organ (Manual II) – 61 notes, enclosed
16
  Double Diapason
61
8
  Gamba
61
8
  First Open Diapason
61
8
  Gemshorn
61
8
  Second Open Diapason
61
4
  Waldflöte
61
8
  Doppel Flute
61
8
  Tuba
61
8
  Tibia Clausa
61
    Tremolo  
 
     
 
     
Swell Organ (Manual III) – 61 notes, enclosed
16
  Bourdon
73
8
  Cornopean
73
8
  Open Diapason
73
8
  Oboe
73
8
  Lieblich Gedeckt
73
8
  Kinura
61
8
  Viole d'Orchestre
73
    Tremolo  
8
  Voix Celeste (TC)
61
   
Xylophone
37 bars
8
  Salicional
73
   
Orchestral Bells
37 bars
4
  Flute
61
   
Cathedral Chimes
EC
2
  Flautina
61
       
 
     
 
     
Choir Organ (Manual I) – 61 notes, enclosed
8
  Open Diapason
73
    Tremolo  
8
  Melodia
73
    Snare Drum Roll  
8
  Dulciana
73
    Chinese Block  
8
  Unda Maris (TC)
61
    Tambourine  
4
  Flute
73
    Tom Tom  
8
  Clarinet
73
    Triangle  
8
  French Horn
73
    Castanets  
               
Echo Organ (at home on Manual II) – 61 notes, enclosed
8
  Fernflöte
73
8
  Vox Humana
61
8
  Muted Viole
61
    Tremolo  
8
  Viole Celeste (TC)
49
   
Cathedral Chimes
20 bells
4
  Flauto Traverso (fr. 8')
       
               
Pedal Organ – 32 notes
32
  Resultant
8
  Flute
GT
16
  Open Diapason
32
16
  Tuba Profunda (ext. GT)
12
16
  Bourdon
32
8
  Tuba
GT
16
  Gedeckt
SW
    Bass Drum  
8
  Open Diapason
GT
    Cymbal  
               
Accessories – by Pedal Studs
    Chinese Gong       Crash Cymbal  
    Thunder Roll       Grand Crash  
    Turkish Cymbal          
             
J.H. & C.S. Odell & Co.
New York City – Opus 247 (1888)
Mechanical action
3 manuals, 32 stops, 36 ranks


The following specification was recorded by Lynnwood Farnam (1885-1930), noted concert organist of the early 20th century, in an organ notebook dated June 11, 1921.
               
Great Organ (Manual II) – 58 notes
16
  Double Open Diapason
58
4
  Flute Harmonique
58
8
  Open Diapason
58
2 2/3
  Twelfth
58
8
  Viola da Gamba
58
2
  Super Octave
58
8
  Dulciana
58
    Mixture, 3 ranks
174
8
  Doppel Flöte
58
8
  Trumpet
58
4
  Octave
58
       
               
Swell Organ (Manual III) – 58 notes, enclosed
16
  Bourdon
58
4
  Hohl Flöte
58
8
  Open Diapason
58
2
  Flageolet
58
8
  Salicional
58
    Cornet, 3 ranks
174
8
  Voix Celeste
58
8
  Cornopean
58
8
  Stopped Diapason
58
8
  Oboe
58
8
  Gemshorn
58
8
  Vox Humana
58
               
Choir Organ (Manual I) – 58 notes
8
  Geigen Principal
58
4
  Rohr Flöte
58
8
  Concert Flute
58
2
  Piccolo Harmonique
58
8
  Dolce
58
8
  Clarinet
58

     

     
Pedal Organ – 30 notes
16
  Open Diapason (wood)
30
8
  Violoncello
30
16
  Bourdon
30

     
               
Couplers and Accessories
    Great to Pedal       8 mechanical pistons to Swell
    Swell to Pedal       8 mechanical pistons to Great
    Choir to Pedal       Great to Pedal reversible [hand]
    Swell to Great       Swell to Great reversible [hand]
    Choir to Great       Balanced Swell pedal  
    Swell to Choir       2 composition pedals to Pedal
    Swell Tremulant          
    Bellows Signal          
             
Henry Erben
New York City (1854)
Mechanical action
3 manuals, 30 stops


The 1861 American Musical Directory stated that the organ in "St. Mark's, Stuyvesant st. at Second av." had "3 banks keys, 30 stops, 2 octaves pedals. Built by Henry Erben, in 1854." Specifications for this organ have not yet been located.

Following its replacement by a new Odell organ in 1888, the Erben organ was sold to Trinity P.E. Cathedral, Little Rock, Arkansas. The asking price was $3,000.
             
Henry Erben
New York City (1846)
Mechanical action
2 manuals, 16 stops, 18 ranks


In 1846, St. Mark's-in-the-Bouwerie asked Erben to rebuild the 1824 Hall & Erben organ, but Erben refused, charging that the organ was actually built by Hall and was of inferior construction. Instead, Erben built a new two-manual organ for the church.
               
Great Organ (Manual I) – [59 notes – GG-f3?]
8
  Open Diapason
59
2
  Fifteenth
59
8
  Stop'd Diapason bass
17
8?
  Clarabella
59
8
  Stop'd Diapason treble
42
    Sesquialtera, 2 ranks, bass
66
4
  Principal
59
    Cornet, 3 ranks, treble
148
3
  Twelfth
59
8
  Trumpet
59
               
Swell Organ (Manual II) – 42 notes (c-f3)
8
  Open Diapason
42
4
  Principal
42
8
  Viol di Gamba
42
4
  Flute
42
8
  Stop'd Diapason
42
8
  Hautboy
42
               
Choir Organ (Manual II) – 17 notes (GG-B)
8
  Dulciano
17
4
  Principal
17
8
  Stop'd Diapason
17
       
               
Pedal Organ – 25 notes (CCC-C)
    Couplers
16
  Double Open Diapason
25
    "Couple 2 setts of Keys"
            "Couple Pedals and Choir Organ"
            "Couple Pedals and Great Organ"
             
Hall & Erben
New York City (1824, 1825)
Mechanical action
Originally 1 manual; enlarged to 2 manuals, 19 stops in 1825


Thomas Hall, who apprenticed with Henry Erben and was also his brother-in-law, became a full partner of Erben's firm in 1824. Their first organ, still extant, was built for the Market Street Reformed Church, which later became the Sea and Land Presbyterian and Methodist Church, and is now the First Chinese Presbyterian Church in lower Manhattan. The Hall & Erben partnership was legally dissolved in 1827, possibly because Erben unethically built organs on the side under his own name. Nonetheless, Hall continued to work with Erben for a total of about 20 years despite their differences in demeanor.
               
Great Organ (Manual I) – [59 notes GG-c3]
8
  Open Diapason
59
2
  Fifteenth
59
8
  Stopped Diapason
59
    Sesquialtera (2 ranks)
}
177?
}
8
  Dulciana
59
    Cornet (3 ranks)
4
  Principal
59
8
  Trumpet
59
3
  Twelfth
59
       
               
Swell Organ (Manual II) – [42 notes (c-f3)]
8
  Open Diapason
42
4
  Flute
42
8
  Stopped Diapason
42
8
  Hautboy
42
8
  Dulciana
42
8
  Trumpet
42
4
  Principal
42
       
               
Choir Organ (bass of Swell) – [17 notes (GG-B)]
8
  Stopped Diapason
17
4
  Principal
17
8
  Dulciano
17
       
               
Sources:
     American Musical Directory. New York: Thomas Hutchinson, 1861.
     Cameron, Peter T. "A Chronology of the Organ Builders Working in New York City," The Bicentennial Tracker. Richmond: Organ Historical Society, Inc., 1976.
     The Diapason (April 1924). Courtesy Jeff Scofield.
     Dunlap, David W. From Abyssinian to Zion: A Guide to Manhattan's Houses of Worship. New York: Columbia University Press, 2004.
     Farnam, Lynnwood. "Organ Notebook," p. 1347 (specification of J.H. & C.S. Odell organ, op. 247, 1888). John de Lancie Library, The Curtis Institute of Music, Philadelphia. Sally Branca, archivist. Courtesy Jonathan Bowen.
     Memorial of St. Mark's Church in the Bowery. Published by the Vestry. New York: Thomas Whittaker, 1899. Courtesy Larry Trupiano.
     New York Songlines web site: http://home.nyc.rr.com/jkn/nysonglines
     St. Mark's Church-in-the-Bowery web site: http://www.stmarksbowery.org
     Webber, F.R. "Some Early Organs in New York City Described Vividly," The Diapason (July 1, 1957). Specifications of Henry Erben organ (1846). Courtesy James Lewis.
     Worthen, Mary Fletcher. The History of Trinity : The Cathedral of the Episcopal Diocese of Arkansas, Little Rock, 1884-1995. LIttle Rock, Ark., 1996. Courtesy David Scribner.

Illustrations:
     Church Crawler web site: www.churchcrawler.co.uk. Exterior.
     Daily News (July 29, 1978). Interior and organ following fire.
     New York Songlines web site: http://home.nyc.rr.com/jkn/nysonglines