Congregation Ansche Chesed - New York City

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Congregation Ansche Chesed
(Conservative Judaism)

251 West 100th Street at West End Avenue
New York, N.Y. 10025
http://www.anschechesed.org

Organ Specifications:
251 West 100th Street at West End Avenue (since 1927)
III/49 Aeolian Company, Op. 1144 (1910, 1914)
1883 Seventh Avenue at West 114th Street (1909-1927)
III/25 J.H. & C.S. Odell, Op. 444 (1908)
160 East 112th Street (c.1877-1909)
• unknown, if any


Congregation Ansche Chesed (People of Mercy) was founded in 1876 as a German-speaking synagogue in Yorkville. From about 1877 to 1909 the congregation worshiped at 160 East 112th Street, in a building now used by Christ Apostolic Church of U.S.A.

 

Congregation Ansche Chesed at old location on Seventh Avenue and 114th Street - New York City

   
 
 
Seventh Avenue & 114th Street
In 1909, Ansche-Chesed moved to a much grander building costing about $200,00 and located at 1883 Seventh Avenue at West 114th Street in Harlem. The new twin-towered synagogue was designed in the neo-Classical style by architect Edward I. Shire, and was faced with limestone trimmed with Harvard brick. Six tall columns framed the large porch, above which was the pediment with a decalogue representing the two tablets of the Ten Commandments. The large interior could accomodate about 1,200 worshipers, with additional seating for 400 in the school facilities. A special feature of the building was a glass-enclosed roof garden that provided a recreation place for children who attended the school.

By the 1920s, Congregation Ansche Chesed had grown in numbers and needed larger facilities. Concurrently, the demographics of Harlem were changing as the formerly all-white neighborhoods became home to many black and Hispanic residents. Many sacred institutions relocated with their members to other areas of Manhattan or the Bronx.

Congregation Ansche Chesed - New York City

 
   
Congregation Ansche Chesed - New York City  
Interior of present Sanctuary
 
   
Ansche Chesed purchased property on West End Avenue at 100th Street on the Upper West Side and, after three years of planning, laid the cornerstone on September 18, 1927, for a new synagogue and adjoining five-story community centre. The old synagogue on Seventh Avenue was sold to the Spanish Vincentians who converted the building into the Roman Catholic Church of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal (Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de la Milagrosa) to serve the Hispanic population of Harlem. This building was sold in 1980 to Mount Neboh Baptist Church.

The present Ansche Chesed synagogue, like its predecessor on Seventh Avenue, was designed by Edward I. Shire. For this synagogue and community centre complex, built at a cost of $1,300,000, Shires combined Romanesque and Byzantine styles and faced the exterior with deep buff-colored brick and stone. The large barrel-vaulted sanctuary could originally seat about 1,600 persons on the main floor and in three galleries. In the Community House are classrooms, a gymnasium, a social hall seating 500, a small chapel, and a roof garden. The completed synagogue was opened on May 4, 1928.
         
 

Aeolian Organ, Op. 1144 (1910, 1914) in Congregation Ansche-Chesed - New York City

Aeolian Company
New York City – Opus 1144 (1910, 1914)
Electro-pneumatic action
3 manuals, 58 stops, 49 ranks





Aeolian's Opus 1144 was original built in 1910 (with several additions in 1914) for the F. W. Woolworth Residence at 990 Fifth Avenue. About 1955, the organ was purchased from the Woolworth Estate for $100,000 and moved to Ansche Chesed Synagogue. By the late 1970s, the organ had become unplayable and it was purchased by Sebastian Glück of New York City who was able to salvage parts for use by owners of other Aeolian organs. Following is the specification of the organ when it was at the Woolworth Residence.
               
Great Organ (Manual I) – 61 notes, enclosed (4" wind pressure)
8
  Diapason F
61
8
  String PP
61
8
  Diapason MF
61
4
  Flute (high)
61
8
  Flute F
61
2
  Piccolo
61
8
  String F
61
8
  Trumpet
61
8
  String MF
61
8
  Clarinet [free reed]
61
8
  Flute P
61
    Tremolo  
8
  String P
61
       
               
Choir Organ (Manual III) – 61 notes, enclosed
8
  Diapason F
GT
8
  String P
GT
8
  Diapason MF
GT
8
  String PP
GT
8
  Flute F
GT
4
  Flute (high)
GT
8
  String F
GT
2
  Piccolo
GT
8
  String MF
GT
8
  Trumpet
GT
8
  Flute P
GT
8
  Clarinet [free reed]
GT

     

     
Swell Organ (Manual II) – 61 notes, enclosed (3½" wind pressure)
16
  Flute (deep)
61
4
  Flute (high)
61
8
  Horn Diapason
61
4
  String (high)
61
8
  Flute
61
2
  Piccolo
61
8
  Quintadena
61
    String P Mixture (5 ranks)
305
8
  Doppel Flute
61
16
  Bassoon (deep)
61
8
  String F
61
8
  Trumpet
61
8
  String F Vibrato [TC]
49
8
  Oboe
61
8
  String P
61
8
  Orchestral Oboe
61
8
  String P Vibrato [TC]
49
8
  Vox Humana
61
8
  String PP
61
    Tremolo  
               
Solo Organ (playable from Manual I or II) – 61 notes, enclosed (6" wind pressure)
8
  English Horn [free reed]
61
8
  Tuba
61
8
  Orchestral Clarinet [free reed]
61
    Tremolo  
               
Antiphonal Organ (playable from Choir) – 61 notes, enclosed
8
  Diapason
61
8
  Vox Humana
61
8
  Flute
61
    Tremolo  
    String Mixture (5 ranks)
305
    Chimes  
               
Echo Organ (playable from Manual II or III) – 61 notes, enclosed (3½" wind pressure)
8
  Flute
61
8
  Vox Humana
61
8
  Flute (Quintadena)
61
    Tremolo  

     

     
Pedal Organ – 30 notes (4" wind pressure)
16
  Flute F (deep)
30
8
  Flute
30
16
  String (deep)
30
16
  Bassoon (deep)
SW
16
  Flute P (deep)
SW
       
               
Percussions
    Harp (augmented) – 61 notes, playable from Swell or Choir
    Chimes – 20 tubes, old, playable from Swell or Great
    Triangle
               
Couplers
    Great to Pedal 8', 4'   Echo to Swell
    Swell to Pedal 8', 4'   Swell to Choir
    Choir to Pedal 8'   Solo to Choir
    Swell to Great 16', 8', 4'   Echo to Choir
    Choir to Great 8'   Great 16', 4', Release
    Solo to Great   Swell 16', 4', Release
    Solo to Swell   Choir 16', 4', Release
    Antiphonal to Swell    
               
Combination Pistons
    Great, Swell, Choir: I, II, III, IV, Release
    General Release
               
Combination Pedals
    Tutti I, II, III, IV, Tutti Release
               
Accessories
    Expression: Swell, Great-Choir, Solo, Echo, Antiphonal
    Tonal Pedal    
    Great to Pedal Reversible    
    Sforzando Pedal    
         
Organ in synagogue at 1883 Seventh Avenue at West 114th Street:

 

J.H. & C.S. Odell organ, Op. 444 (1908) in Congregation Ansche-Chesed - New York City (Wurts Bros., 1910)

J.H. & C.S. Odell
New York City – Opus 444 (1908)
Tubular-pneumatic action
2 manuals, 25 stops, 25 ranks


In 1908, the Odell Company built a three-manual organ with tubular-pneumatic action for Congregation Ansche-Chesed, then located on Seventh Avenue at 114th Street. The organ was installed behind a pipe façade in the choir gallery above the Bima.

In 1927, the building was converted to become the Roman Catholic Church of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal, and in 1980 was acquired by Mount Neboh Baptist Church.

The fate of this organ is unknown.
               
Great Organ (Manual II) – 61 notes
8
  Open Diapason
61
4
  Flute Harmonique
61
8
  Gamba
61
4
  Octave
61
8
  Dulciana
61
2
  Super Octave
61
8
  Doppel Flöte
61
       

     

     
Swell Organ (Manual III) – 61 notes, enclosed
8
  Open Diapason
61
4
  Rohr Flöte
61
8
  Salicional
61
2
  Piccolo
61
8
  Vox Celestis [TC]
49
8
  Cornopean
61
8
  Aeoline
61
8
  Vox Humana
61
8
  Stopped Diapason
61
8
  Oboe
61

     

     
Choir Organ (Manual I) – 61 notes, enclosed
8
  Viole d'Orchestre
61
2
  Flautina
61
8
  Melodia
61
8
  Clarinet
61
4
  Flute d'Amour
61
       

     

     
Pedal Organ – 30 notes
16
  Open Diapason
30
8
  Violoncello
30
16
  Bourdon
30
       
               
Couplers
    Great to Pedal   Choir to Great
    Swell to Pedal   Swell to Choir
    Choir to Pedal   Swell to Swell 4'
    Swell to Great 16', 8', 4'   Pedal to Pedal Octaves
               
Mechanical Accessories
    Swell Tremulant     Wind Indicator
    Choir Tremulant     Crescendo Indicator
               
Piston Combination Movements (Adjustable)
    Great Organ Forte       Swell Organ Mezzo  
    Great Organ Mezzo       Swell Organ Piano  
    Great Organ Piano       Choir Organ Forte  
    Swell Organ Forte       Choir Organ Piano  
               
Pedal Movements
    [Balanced Swell Pedal] *     Balanced Crescendo Pedal
    [Balanced Choir Pedal] *    
* not indicated
         
Sources:
     Adams, Michael Henry. Harlem Lost and Found: An Architectural and Social History, 1765-1915. New York: Monacelli Press, 2002.
     Congregation Ansche Chesed web site: http://www.anschechesed.org
     Dunlap, David W. From Abyssinian to Zion: A Guide to Manhattan's Houses of Worship. New York: Columbia University Press, 2004.
     Dunlap, David W. "Vestiges of Harlem's Jewish Past," The New York Times (June 7, 2002).
     J.H. & C.S. Odell Organs web site: http://www.odellorgans.com
     "New Temple Is Opened. First of Three Days' Celebration Begins at Ansche Chesed," The New York Times (May 5, 1928).
     "New $200,000 Edifice Planned For Large Harlem Congregation," The New York Times (Mar. 8, 1908).
     Precker, Michael. Ansche-Chesed. A Synagogue Clings to Life. published on Ansche-Chesed's web site.
     "Service Dedicates $1,300,000 Temple," The New York Times (May 7, 1928).
     Smith, Rollin. The Aeolian Pipe Organ and its Music. Richmond: The Organ Historical Society, 1998.
     "Temple Stone Laid by Ansche Chesed," The New York Times (Sep. 19, 1927).
     Trupiano, Larry. Factory Specifications of J.H. & C.S. Odell Organ, Op. 444 (1908).

Illustrations:
     Congregation Ansche Chesed web site. Exterior and interior of present building.
     Glück, Sebastian. Interior of Temple Ansche Chesed on Seventh Avenue.
     Sperr, Percy Loomis. 1927 photo of Temple Ansche Chesed on Seventh Avenue.
     Wurts Bros. (New York). Interior (1910) showing Bima and J.H. & C.S. Odell organ, Op. 444 (1908).