THE CATHEDRAL ORGAN 1906-1991
The Cathedral of the Sacred Heart (Richmond, Virginia) organ was built by the John Brown Company of Wilmington, Delaware, and installed by Mr. C. B. Brown prior to the dedication of the Cathedral on November 29, 1906. The dedication booklet states that when it was installed, it was the largest in the country. (This is doubtful.) The original organ contained forty-seven ranks, seven couplers and nineteen accessories; it had a total of 3,916 pipes. The action was tubular-pneumatic, with an extended console placed in the center of the gallery.
In 1912, just six years after the organ was built, it was rebuilt by M. P. Moller, Inc. of Hagerstown, Maryland, and provided with the more up-to-date electric action. It was necessary to reduce the number of ranks to thirty-nine. The new console was placed at right angles to the organ, and the couplers were increased from the original seven to twenty.
In 1931, Moller added a new drawstop action to the console. Also, the diapason basses were installed and the tonal balance was improved in depth, sparkle, clarity and color.
In 1940, the organ was completely rebuilt and redesigned by the Tellers Organ Company. New ventil chests were added throughout. Also a new console was placed again in the center of the gallery. Several new ranks of pipes were added to the 1912 Moller organ. Only the case pipes remained of the original John Brown organ.
The blower was added by Tellers in 1940. It appears to be a used 1925 vintage kinetic blower from a theater organ. It puts out 24 inches of wind pressure.