Bowne Street Community Church - Flushing (Queens), NY
 
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Bowne Street Community Church
(Reformed Church in America and United Church of Christ)

143-11 Roosevelt Avenue
Flushing (Queens), N.Y. 11354
http://thebscc.org


Organ Specifications:
143-11 Roosevelt Avenue (since 1892)
III/46 Skinner Organ Company, Op. 813 (1929); altered
III/30 Skinner Organ Company, Op. 813 (1929)
• II/ Reuben Midmer & Sons (c.1892)
Prince and Washington Streets (1843-1892)
• George Jardine & Son (<1869)



The Protestant Reformed Dutch Church of Flushing was organized on May 20, 1842. In 1843 construction began on a building at the corner of Prince and Washington Streets overlooking the Flushing Creek in the heart of what was then the finest residential district of Flushing. By 1890 the membership of the church had reached 300 and another new building was planned. The congregation borrowed money from the Collegiate Church in Manhattan and began construction on the present building which was completed in 1892. The church contains beautiful stained glass windows by Louis Comfort Tiffany.

1909 Postcard of The Congregational Church in Flushing, NY  
1909 postcard – Congregational Church in Flushing  
In 1851, a number of persons withdrew their membership and joined with others in forming the first Congregational Church of Flushing. The Congregational Church was located just across Bowne Street where the high-rise Flushing House retirement home is now located. In 1974, one hundred and twenty-three years after they split, the two congregations merged back together and formed The Bowne Street Community Church – associated with both the United Church of Christ and the Reformed Church in America. Shortly after the two congregations had started meeting together but before the final incorporation of The Bowne Street Community Church, the Congregational Church was destroyed by fire (December 1970). The reason the two churches merged was the changing character of Flushing. During the 1930s through the 1950s, the neighborhood had been predominantly white Anglo-Saxon Protestant and both churches had large, active congregations. During the sixties and seventies, Flushing began to become home to what is now one of the largest Asian populations in the United States. The resulting decline in membership of both congregations was the stimulus for the merger.

In 1978 a group of immigrants in Flushing from Taiwan formed the Zion Christian Church with services in Taiwanese. Zion Christian Church began meeting in Bowne Street Community Church about 1983 and in 1988 officially merged with BSCC to form a unified, bilingual, congregation.

See also the web page for First Congregational Church of Flushing.
           

E.M. Skinner Organ, Op. 813 (1929) at Bowne Street Community Church - Flushing (Queens), NY
Skinner Organ Company
Boston, Mass. – Opus 813 (1929); rev.
Electro-pneumatic action
3 manuals, 34 stops, 46 ranks


From 1977-1984, the 1929 Skinner organ was tonally revised and enlarged by Peter Batchelder of New York City. Batchelder replaced the water-damaged chests of the Great and Choir divisions with new slider chests; he then installed a new Great division, and replaced the Choir division with an unenclosed Positive. From 1984-1988, John Wessel changed and added
to the specification including the Pedal Mixture, installed Peterson electronic extensions for the two 32' stops, and modified the console.
               

Organ at Bowne Street Community Church - Flushing (Queens), NY

Organ at Bowne Street Community Church - Flushing (Queens), NY
 
Organ at Bowne Street Community Church - Flushing (Queens), NY
               
Great Organ (Manual II) – 61 notes
16
  Quintadena
61
2 2/3
  Quint
61
8
  Principal
61
2
  Super Octave
61
8
  Rohr Bourdon
61
    Mixture V ranks
305
8
  Gemshorn
61
8
  Trumpet
61
4
  Octave
61
    Chimes  
4
  Wald Flute
61
       
 
     
 
     
Swell Organ (Manual III) – 61 notes, enclosed
16
  Bourdon
73
2
  Block Flute
61
8
  Open Diapason
73
    Sesquialtera II ranks
122
8
  Rohr Flute
73
    Mixture III ranks
183
8
  Salicional
73
16
  Contra Oboe
85
8
  Voix Celeste
73
8
  Trumpet
73
4
  Octave
73
8
  Oboe (fr. 16')
4
  Flute
73
    Tremolo  
               
Positive Organ (Manual I) – 61 notes
8
  Gedeckt
61
    Scharff IV ranks
244
4
  Principal
61
16
  Musette
61
4
  Koppel Flute
61
8
  Cromorne
61
2
  Octave
61
    Tremolo  
1 1/3
  Quint
61
       
               
Pedal Organ – 32 notes
32
  Contra Bass (ext. 16')
dig
4
  Octave (fr. Contra Bass)
16
  Contra Bass
44
    Mixture II-III ranks
84
16
  Bourdon
44
32
  Contra Bombarde (ext. 16')
dig
16
  Lieblich Gedeckt
SW
16
  Bombarde
44
8
  Principal (fr. Contra Bass)
16
  Contra Oboe
SW
8
  Bourdon (fr. 16')
8
  Bombarde (fr. 16')
8
  Stille Gedeckt [sic]
SW
       
               
Couplers
    Great to Pedal 8'   Positiv to Great 8'
    Swell to Pedal 8', 4'   Swell to Positiv 16', 8', 4'
    Positiv to Pedal 8', 4'   Swell 16', 4'
   
Swell to Great 16', 8', 4'
   
         
Adjustable Combinations
   
Swell Organ Pistons 1-2-3-4-5-6 (thumb)
Great Organ Pistons 1-2-3-4-5-6 (thumb)
Positive Organ Pistons 1-2-3-4-5-6 (thumb)
Pedal Organ Pistons 1-2-3-4 (thumb & toe)
Generals Pistons 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8 (thumb & toe)
  General Cancel (thumb)
  Setter (thumb)
         
Reversibles
    Great to Pedal (thumb & toe)   Positive to Pedal (thumb & toe)
    Swell to Pedal (thumb & toe)   Sforzando (thumb & toe)
         
Mechanicals
    Balanced Swell Pedal   Memory Up (thumb)
    Crescendo Pedal   Memory Down (thumb)
           

E.M. Skinner Organ, Op. 813 (1929) at Bowne Street Community Church - Flushing (Queens), NY
Skinner Organ Company
Boston, Mass. – Opus 813 (1929)
Electro-pneumatic action
3 manuals, 27 stops, 30 ranks




In 1929, the Skinner Organ Company of Boston was commissioned to build a new organ at a cost of $22,800. Following are the original specifications of the Skinner organ.
               
Great Organ (Manual II) – 61 notes
16
  Bourdon (ext. PED)
17
    Grave Mixture II ranks
122
8
  First Diapason
61
8
  Tuba *
61
8
  Second Diapason
61
8
  French Horn *
61
8
  Clarabella
61
    French Horn Tremolo  
4
  Principal
61
    Chimes  
           
* enclosed with Choir
Swell Organ (Manual III) – 61 notes, enclosed
16
  Bourdon
73
4
  Octave
73
8
  Diapason
73
    Mixture III ranks
183
8
  Rohrflute
73
16
  Contra Oboe
85
8
  Salicional
73
8
  Trumpet
73
8
  Voix Celeste
73
8
  Oboe (fr. 16')
8
  Flauto Dolce
73
8
  Vox Humana
73
8
  Flute Celeste (TC)
61
    Tremolo  
               
Choir Organ (Manual I) – 61 notes, enclosed
8
  Concert Flute
73
8
  Clarinet
73
8
  Dulciana
73
    Tremolo  
8
  Unda Maris (TC)
61
   
Harp
preparation
4
  Flute
73
   
Chimes
preparation
               
Pedal Organ – 32 notes
32
  Resultant
8
  Still Gedeckt
SW
16
  Contra Bass
44
16
  Trombone
44
16
  Bourdon
44
16
  Contra Oboe
SW
16
  Echo Lieblich
SW
8
  Tromba (fr. 16')
8
  Octave (fr. Contra Bass)
    Chimes
GT
8
  Gedeckt (fr. Bourdon)
       
           
Previous organ:

Reuben Midmer & Sons
Brooklyn, N.Y. (c.1892)
Unknown action
2 manuals


Specifications for this organ have not yet been located.
           
Previous organ in church at Prince and Washington Streets:

George Jardine & Son
New York City (<1869)
Unknown action


Specifications for this organ have not yet been located.
           
Sources:
     Aeolian-Skinner Archives web site: http://aeolianskinner.organsociety.org/
     Bowne Street Community Church web site: http://thebscc.org
     Kinzey, Allen, and Sand Lawn, comps. E.M. Skinner/Aeolian-Skinner Opus List. New Rev. Ed. Richmond: The Organ Historical Society, 1997.
     Trupiano, Larry. Stoplist of the organ in November 1999.

Illustrations:
     AJWB Collection. Photos (2015) of interior and organ console.
     Bowne Street Community Church web site: http://thebscc.org. Exterior and Skinner organ case.
     eBay.com. Postcard (1909) of First Congregational Church.