FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH, Telegraph Ave. at 22nd Street, OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA
STOP LIST OF THE 1907 MURRAY M. HARRIS ORGAN [43 voices and 48 ranks]
TremoloPistons: 10 General pistons duplicated by Toe Studs. 7 manual pistons for all three
manuals. 5 Pedal pistons duplicated by Toe Studs. Reversibles on pistons and Toe Studs for Sw.
to Ped. 8 ft. and 4 ft. Great to Ped.; Ch. to Ped. General Cancel and Sforzando piston.
Pedal 16' Principal, 61
16' Open Wood, 32 8' Principal, 61
16' Open Diapason, 20 (1-12 Gt.) 8' Gross flute, 61
16' Bourdon, 32 8' Gemshorn, 61
16' Lieblich Gedeckt (sw.) 8' Flute Celeste, 61
8' Octave, 32 4' Octave, 61
8' Gedeckt, 32 2 2/3' Twelfth, 61
8' Violoncello, 32 2' Fifteenth, 61
4' Fifteenth, 12 IV Mixture (1 1/3'), 244
16' Trombone, 32 8' Trumpet, 61
16' Contrafagotto (Sw.) Chimes
8' Trumpet (Gt.) 4' Clarion (Gt.) Swell
Choir 16' Lieblich Gedeckt, 73
8' Geigen Principal, 61 8' Violin Diapason, 73
8' Flute, 61 8' Stopped Flute, 73
8' Dulciana, 61 8' Salicional, 73
8' Unda Maris, 61 8' Aeoline, 73
4' Principal, 61 8' Vox Celeste, 61
4' Wald Flute, 61 4' Harmonic Flute, 61
2 2/3' Nazard, 61 4' Violina, 61
2' Piccolo, 61 1 1/3' Larigot, 61
1 3/5' Tierce, 61 III Sharf (2/3'), 183
8' Clarinet, 61 16' Contrafagotto, 73
8' English Horn, 61 8' Trompette, 73
Tremulo 8' Oboe, 73
4' Clarion, 61
TremoloPistons: 10 General pistons duplicated by Toe Studs. 7 manual pistons for all three manuals. 5 Pedal pistons duplicated by Toe Studs. Reversibles on pistons and Toe Studs for Sw. to Ped. 8 ft. and 4 ft. Great to Ped.; Ch. to Ped. General Cancel and Sforzando piston.
Couplers: All Ped. to Manuals at 8 ft. and 4 ft. Sw. and Ch. to Gt. 16 ft., 8 ft., 4 ft. Sw. to Ch. 16 ft., 8 ft., 4 ft. Ch. to Sw 8 ft. Gt. to Ch. 8 ft.
In 1983 when Charles McManis, then of Kansas City, Kansas, approached renovation of the III/48 Murray M. Harris organ in the First Baptist Church, Oakland, he found considerable modification in it since its 1907 installation.
Originally tubular pneumatic, the action had been electrified in 1924. Major tonal modifications had been made in 1956, with releathering some twenty years later. A new Austin all-electric console was installed in 1959.
A purist-type restoration seemed difficult and unwise, since modifications had increased the organ's flexibility. (A restorer in returning older instruments to their original state just may restore the inability to handle the organ literature musically.) Still further modification at the First Baptist Church could provide increased registrational-friendliness to a much larger segment of the organ literature, with increased musical excitement.
The 1956 changes had included moving a Choir 4' Flute d'Amour to 2 2/3' pitch, an 8' Viol de Gamba to 4' pitch as a small Principal, switching the divisional locations of two manual reeds, addition of a new shrill Mixture IV on a chest seven feet above the Great chest.
The Great Diapason chorus (Octave, 12th and 15th) at some time had been softened, leaving the 8' Gross Flute prominent, and the full 'ensemble' sounding a bit like a calliope and piccolo. Further, forced-air heat stratification in winter raised the Mixture pitch far above that of the other Great ranks of pipes.
The McManis modifications of the Great division included: (1) The revoiced Mixture was mounted on a new chest at the same level as the Great main chest, (2) Replacement of the leathered-lip 8' Diapason with a new Principal having greater harmonic development, (3) Revoicing of the Dulciana-like 8' Gemshorn as a broader, conical string, (4) Tonal regulation of the Octave, 12th and 15th, as well as the 8' Gross Flute, (5) Replacement of the Pedal Trumpet (which before 1956 had been a manual stop) with pipes of a broader, fuller tone, and extending it upward for use at 8' in the Great.
Modifications to the Swell and Choir divisions: (1) The Dolce Cornet V (365 pipes!) was modified by elimination of the 12th and 17th ranks, revoicing the pipes as a telling 2/3' Sharf III, (2) The former Cornet 12th was rescaled as a 2' Principal occupying the former Harmonic Piccolo toeboard, (3) The almost speechless former 2' Piccolo was revoiced as a 1 1/3' Larigot and racked on a spare Swell toeboard, (4) The former Cornet 1 3/5' rank was transferred to a spare Choir toeboard as a mutation to work with the 2 2/3' Nazard, (5) The Swell Oboe and Choir English Horn ranks were switched back to their proper manuals, (6) Tonal finishing of all ranks brought ensemble contrast between Swell and Great divisions.
The redesigned Harris organ retains its inherent richness of tone, but provides added Werkprinzip-type divisional ensembles., The Swell, with a flue chorus that now matches its fiery reed chorus, packs a tremendous English-style wallop with dramatic use of the shades.
The originally romantic instrument has become sufficiently eclectic to handle the bulk of the organ literature--J. S. Bach, nineteenth and twentieth century English and French--excitingly--without loss of its original romantic flavor.
--Charles W. McManis
The First Baptist Church of Oakland has been the proud possessor of two Murray M. Harris organs. The first was in the old church at Brush and Fourteenth Streets and was installed only several months before that building burned. As soon as plans were laid for the present building, the Murray M. Harris Co. was contracted to build this one for the price of $12,500. This edifice was almost completed at the time of the great San Francisco earthquake in 1906, and was considered to have suffered the greatest damage of any building in the East Bay at that time. The magnificent acoustics of the Julia-Morgan-designed sanctuary greatly enhance the organ. In the process of raising money to rebuild the damaged building, Mr. Andrew Carnegie, the famous philanthropist was contacted and contributed $2500 toward the cost of this instrument. It was built in 1907 and dedicated in 1908.
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