St. Luke Evangelical Lutheran Church - Brooklyn, NY (Brownstoner.com)
 
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St. Luke Evangelical Lutheran Church

259 Washington Avenue
Brooklyn, N.Y. 11205
http://www.st-lukes-brooklyn.org


Organ Specifications:
259 Washington Avenue at DeKalb Avenue (1895-2015)
II/21 Müller & Abel, Op. 7 (1895); reb. 1929
Carlton Avenue, near Myrtle Avenue (1871–burned 1894)
• Frank Roosevelt (>1874) – not on Roosevelt list

In the year 1869, a small group of German-speaking Christians in the growing Clinton Hill/Fort Greene community decided they no longer wished to travel by ferry to the German Lutheran Church in Manhattan for worship each Sunday. On October 18, the Festival of St. Luke, they organized a congregation dedicated to ministry in their own neighborhood. Appropriately, they named their church for that man of Christian mission, the Gospel-writer, St. Luke. The new congregation met at first in a small public hall owned by one of the members, and in 1871 moved to a small frame building in Carlton Avenue, near Myrtle Avenue, occupying an old Baptist church that had been moved from Gold Street. So that the children of members could be educated, a brick schoolhouse was built next to the church. The congregation stayed at this location until early 1893, when a fire nearly destroyed the frame church. After the Trustees decided that it would not pay to repair the building, the congregation met in the schoolhouse until a new church building could be erected.

  St. Luke Evangelical Lutheran Church - Brooklyn, NY
A site for the new church, on Washington Avenue near DeKalb Avenue, was purchased from the Charles Pratt Estate for $35,000. The plot, which measured 80 by 200 feet, contained "an old and commodious mansion," which was thus moved to the rear of the property and refitted for use as a Sabbath and day school. The English Gothic church, estimated to cost $40,000, was faced in Indiana limestone on the front, with brick covering the rear and side walls.

Parish House (1924) of St. Luke Evangelical Lutheran Church - Brooklyn, NY  

In 1905, services were first conducted in English as well as German. In 1907, the sanctuary was renovated and several stained glass windows were installed. A consolidation with nearby Holy Trinity Church in 1913 brought new members and different perspectives, and in 1924, a new Parish House was built behind the church. In 1995, the upper floor of the Parish House was renovated in order to start St. Luke's Academy, a pre-school and after-school ministry dedicated to providing affordable quality child care and enrichment for the community.

By 2015 the congregation had declined to about 75 members, and their Gothic structure needed repairs that would cost up to $10 million. The decision was made to close the church, and the final service was held on June 22, 2015. St. Luke's Academy, the preschool attached to the church, had its last day on August 31, 2015. The church was sold to a developer who planned to build condominiums on the site.

               
Müller & Abel
New York City – Opus 7 (1895)
Electro-pneumatic action (added 1929)
2 manuals, 19 stops, 21 ranks


Oscar Müller and George Abel, both German immigrants, were employed in the Roosevelt Organ Works of New York, Philadelphia and Boston, the preeminent organ builders from 1870 through 1893. When the Roosevelt firm ceased operations, Müller and Abel established their own factory in New York City, building sixty-two organs between 1893 and 1902.

The Müller & Abel organ in St. Luke's Lutheran Church was installed in 1894, and was the firm's Opus 7. For the first several decades of its existence, the organ had Müller & Abel's Patented tubular-pneumatic action, and the bellows was blown by a rotary water motor that raised the necessary wind pressure; the majority of the water motor parts are still extant. In 1929, Clark & Fenton rebuilt the organ with electro-pneumatic action, adding a new theatre-style stopkey console, and a Vox Humana stop.

The following specification is derived from two sources: 1) an organ scrapbook by F.R. Webber, and 2) David Schnute's typed list in The Tracker 14:2:3 as available on the Organ Historical Society Database. Webber's notebook entry, dated Tues., May 27, 1894, erroneously states that the organ was built by [J.H. & C.S.] Odell, yet includes the text "Müller & Abel's Patented Tubular pneumatic chests." Webber also lists the couplers and pedal movements. Click here to view F.R. Webber's notebook entry.
               
Great Organ (Manual I) – 61 notes, enclosed
8
  Open Diapason *
61
4
  Principal
61
8
  Viola di Gamba
61
2
  Fifteenth
61
8
  Dulciana
61
8
  Trumpet
61
8
  Doppel Flöte
61
   
* unenclosed
               
Swell Organ (Manual II) – 61 notes, enclosed
16
  Bourdon
61
4
  Harmonic Flute
61
8
  Violin Diapason
61
    Dolce Cornet, 3 ranks
183
8
  Aeoline
61
8
  Oboe
61
8
  Vox Celeste
61
8
  Vox Humana [added 1929]
61
8
  Stopped Diapason
61
    Tremolo  
               
Pedal Organ – 30 notes
16
  Open Diapason
30
8
  Violoncello
30
16
  Bourdon
30
       
               
Couplers
    Swell to Great       Great sub-octaves on itself
    Swell to Great octaves       Great to Pedal  
    Swell to Pedal          
               
Pedal Movements
    2 for Great & Pedal stops     Great to Pedal reversible  
    2 for Swell & Pedal stops     Balanced Swell Pedal  
    Full Organ Pedal          
               
Organ in church located on Carlton Avenue, near Myrtle Avenue:

Frank Roosevelt
New York City (sometime after 1874)
Mechanical action


Specifications for this organ have not yet been located.
               
Sources:
     "A New Home, An Old Parish," The New York Times (Sept. 30, 1894).
     Frishberg, Hannah. "Brookland Buys Landmarked Clinton Hill Church for $8.8 Million, Plans Condos" Brownstoner: Brooklyn inside and out (Aug. 19, 2015).
     Organ Historical Society Pipe Organ Database: http://database.organsociety.org/index.html
     St. Luke Evangelical Lutheran Church web site: http://www.st-lukes-brooklyn.org
     Schnute, David. The Tracker (14:2:3). Specifications of Müller & Abel organ, Op. 7 (1895).
     Webber, F.R. "Organ scrapbook" at Organ Historical Society Archives, Princeton, N.J. Specifications of (Odell) Müller & Abel organ (1895). Courtesy Jonathan Bowen.

Illustrations:
     "A New Home, An Old Parish," The New York Times (Sept. 30, 1894). Drawing.
     Brooklyn Collection, Brooklyn Public Library. 1924 drawing of Parish House.
     Brownstoner: Brooklyn inside and out (Aug. 19, 2015). Exterior.