Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist Church - New York City (photo: Alan Price)
 
Click on images to enlarge
Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist Church

101 West 123rd Street at Lenox Avenue
New York, N.Y. 10027
http://www.ephesus.org



Organ Specifications:
III/42 Wicks Pipe Organ Company, Op. 5383 (1973)
II/38 Allen Organ Company electronic (c.1976) – Youth Church
• III/ Aeolian Company (installed c.1950) – burned (1969)
II/21 Hilborne L. Roosevelt, Op. 341 (1886)






Second Collegiate Reformed Church of Harlem - New York City  
Harlem's skyline landmark is the slender steeple of Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist Church on West 123rd Street and Lenox Avenue. This is a cultural landmark, too, as the birthplace in 1968 of the Boys Choir of Harlem. The roots of this sanctuary are common with those of the Elmendorf Reformed Church. Both emerged from the Harlem Reformed Dutch Church, which separated along economic and geographic lines in 1887, when this building was constructed as the Second Collegiate Church of Harlem, to serve the wealthier families living in western Harlem. John Rochester Thomas (1848-1901) designed the late Victorian Gothic Revival building faced in yellowish Ohio sandstone that was constructed between 1885-1887. The church's slender tower was once capped by a metal crocket, and the lower level has corbels of monsters that flank the central entrance; between the doors is a mustachioed head of a man. Thomas, who is perhaps best known for his Hall of Records/Surrogate's Court on Chambers Street, designed more than 150 churches, including the 1883 building for Calvary Baptist Church on West 57th Street. A bell cast in Amsterdam in 1734 for the original Harlem church was brought here. The Church Hall, now the Youth Chapel, was erected at the rear of the building between 1894-1895.

By the late 1920s, the demographics of Harlem had changed, and many white Protestants relocated to other areas. In 1929, the Collegiate Reformed congregation moved downtown (taking the bell with them) to become the East Eighty-ninth Street Reformed Church. Their former church building was leased in 1930 by an Adventist congregation formed by the merger of two older black groups, and that group, now named Ephesus, purchased the building in 1939. The Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist Church grew rapidly, and by 1945 the membership reached 1,000, the mortgage was satisfied and a new pipe organ was installed.

  Church Hall of the Second Collegiate Reformed Church of Harlem - New York City
  Church Hall
On January 9, 1969, a fire started in the roof of the Youth Chapel and quickly spread to the church. The entire interior was destroyed, except for three stained glass windows. Witnesses on the scene remarked that the fire department took great care in causing minimal damage to the windows. The fire weakened the steeple and the top 30 feet was removed to prevent it from collapsing. While the church was rebuilt (1969-1978), the members of the church worshiped at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church at 127th Street and Fifth Avenue. The interior of the building and the roof were totally rebuilt at a cost of $2.3 million and, in 1978, the congregation returned. In December 2006, the truncated steeple was restored with the addition of a replacement pinnacle of lead-coated copper and steel.

Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist Church is within the Mount Morris Park Historic District, designated In 1971 by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission.
           
  Wicks organ, Op. 5383 (1973) in Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist Church - New York City (photo: Steven E. Lawson)
Wicks Pipe Organ Company
Highland, Ill. – Opus 5383 (1973)
Electric stop and combination action
3 manuals, 45 stops, 42 ranks









The present organ in Ephesus Church was built by the Wicks Organ Company in 1973, but since the church rebuilding project was not finished, the organ was stored until it could be installed in the summer of 1976. Exposed pipes (many topped with copper tuning sleeves) of the Great and Pedal divisions are in front of a screen that masks the chamber containing the enclosed Choir and Swell divisions. The detached three-manual drawknob console is in the center of the choir gallery. Total cost of the organ was $100,000.
               
Great Organ (Manual II) – 61 notes (2¼" wind pressure)

16
  Quintaton
61
1
  Mixtur IV ranks
244
8
  Principal
61
16
  Fagott
SW
8
  Gedackt
61
8
  Trompete [3" pressure]
61
4
  Octave
61
    Tremolo  
4
  Spillflöte
61
   
Chimes
21 tubes
2
  Octave
61
       
               
Swell Organ (Manual III) – 61 notes, enclosed (3" wind pressure)
8
  Rohrflöte
61
16
  Fagott [unit]
73
8
  Gambe
61
8
  Trompette
61
8
  Voix Celeste [TC]
49
8
  Fagott
4
  Spitzflöte
73
4
  Hautbois
61
2 2/3
  Nazat
61
    Tremolo  
2
  Principal
61
    Swell 16'  
2
  Flachflöte [ext. Spitzflöte]
    Swell Unison Silent  
1 3/5
  Terz [TC]
49
    Swell 4'  
1/4
  Cimbel III ranks
183
       
               
Choir Organ (Manual I) – 61 notes, enclosed (3" wind pressure)
8
  Holzgedackt
61
8
  Schalmei
61
8
  Erzähler
61
8
  Trompete
GT
8
  Unda Maris [TC]
49
    Blank  
4
  Principal
61
    Tremolo  
4
  Nachthorn [unit]
73
    Choir 16'  
2
  Blockflöte [ext.]
    Choir Unison Silent  
1 1/3
  Quinte
61
    Choir 4'  
1/2
  Scharff III ranks
183
       
           
Pedal Organ – 32 notes
32
  Resultant
4
  Kleingedackt [ext.]
16
  Principal
32
2
  Mixtur III ranks
96
16
  Subbass [unit]
56
16
  Posaune [unit]
44
16
  Quintaton
GT
16
  Fagott
SW
8
  Octave
32
8
  Trompete [ext.]
12
8
  Bassflöte [ext.]
4
  Schalmei
CH
4
  Choralbass
32
       
               
Couplers
    Great to Pedal 8'     Swell to Great 16', 8', 4'
    Swell to Pedal 8', 4'     Choir to Great 16', 8', 4'
    Choir to Pedal 8', 4'     Swell to Choir 8', 4'
               
Combination Pistons
   
Swell Organ Pistons 1-2-3-4-5-6 (thumb)
Great Organ Pistons 1-2-3-4-5-6 (thumb)
Choir Organ Pistons 1-2-3-4-5-6 (thumb)
Pedal Organ Pistons 1-2-3-4-5-6 (thumb & toe)
Entire Organ Pistons 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8 (thumb & toe)
               
Reversibles
    Great to Pedal (thumb & toe)   Choir to Pedal (thumb)
    Swell to Pedal (thumb)   Tutti (thumb)
               
Accessories
    Swell Expression Pedal   Wind Indicator Light
    Choir Expression Pedal   Tutti Indicator Light
    Crescendo Pedal   Crescendo Indicator Light
           
Wicks organ, Op. 5383 (1973) in Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist Church - New York City (photo: Steven E. Lawson)   Wicks organ, Op. 5383 (1973) in Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist Church - New York City (photo: Steven E. Lawson)
           
  Allen Organ (c.1976) in Youth Church of Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist Church - New York City (photo: Steven E. Lawson)
Organ in Youth Church (Auditorium):

Allen Organ Company
Macungie, Penn. (c.1976)
Electronic tonal production
2 manuals, 38 stops



The Youth Chapel, located in the original "Church Hall" directly behind the sanctuary, contains a two-manual Allen Organ Company digital instrument.
               
Great Organ (Manual I) – 61 notes

16
  Quintaden       Alterable Voice 5  
8
  Prinzipal       Alterable Voice 6  
8
  Dulciana       Alterable Voice 7  
8
  Hohlflöte       Alterable Voice 8  
4
  Oktav       Percussion L & R  
4
  Spitzflöte       Swell to Great  
2 2/3
  Quinte       Tremulant  
2
  Doublette       Celeste Tuning  
2
  Waldflöte       Speech Articulation Off  
    Mixture IV ranks       Flute Vibrato  
8
  Schalmei          
8
  Krummhorn          

           
Swell Organ (Manual II) – 61 notes
8
  Salizional       Alterable Voice 1  
8
  Gemshorn       Alterable Voice 2  
8
  Gedeckt       Alterable Voice 3  
4
  Spitzprinzipal       Percussion L  
4
  Koppelflöte       Percussion R  
2 2/3
  Nasat       Chiff  
2
  Blockflöte       Sustain  
1 3/5
  Terz       Tremulant  
1
  Sifflöte       Doubling Off  
    Mixture III ranks       Celeste Tuning  
16
  Contra Fagotto       Fast Attack  
8
  Hautbois       Speech Articulation  
8
  Trompette       Sub Octave L  
4
  Clairon       Sub Octave R  
            Antiphonal Organ  
            Main Organ Off  

     

     
Pedal Organ – 32 notes
32
  Contra Bass       Great to Pedal  
32
  Contre Bourdon       Swell to Pedal  
16
  Prinzipal       Sustain R  
16
  Bourdon       Percussion L  
16
  Lieblich Gedeckt          
8
  Octave          
8
  Gedecktflöte          
4
  Choral Bass          
4
  Flute Ouverte          
    Mixture II ranks          
16
  Posaune          
8
  Trompette          
           
  Organ case in Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist Church - New York City (c.1965)
Aeolian Company
New York City – installed c.1950
Electro-pneumatic action
3 manuals








Following the removal of the 1886 Roosevelt, the church acquired a three-manual organ built by the Aeolian Company and reinstalled it behind the modified 1886 Roosevelt case. Church sources suggest that the organ had a connection with the Guggenheim family, so it may be that Ephesus obtained Aeolian's Op. 1793 and/or Op. 1794 from the American Women's Association Clubhouse on West 57th Street, both of which had been purchased by Florence (Mrs. Daniel) Guggenheim in 1931. The fire of January 1969 melted the case, but the remains were purchased by Vaughan Ramsey, organist of Flatbush-Tompkins Congregational Church in Brooklyn. Matthew Bellocchio and Larry Trupiano assisted Ramsey with the removal of the pipes. Specifications for this organ have not yet been located.
           
  Hilborne L. Roosevelt organ, Op. 341 (1886) in Second Collegiate Reformed Church of Harlem - New York City
   
  Hilborne L. Roosevelt organ, Op. 341 (1886) in Second Collegiate Reformed Church of Harlem - New York City
  1910 photo of H. L. Roosevelt organ, Op. 341
Hilborne L. Roosevelt
New York City – Opus 341 (1886)
Mechanical action
2 manuals, 19 stops, 21 ranks









In 1930, the Ephesus congregation began worshiping in the Second Collegiate Reformed Church. The organ at that time was a two-manual instrument built in 1886 by Hilborne L. Roosevelt of New York City. This organ was a slightly modified version of the standard "Style 32" model produced by the Roosevelt Organ Works.

When it was learned that the Roosevelt organ was being removed by the church (c.1949), organ historian F.R. Webber purchased the pipes for $25 and reinstalled them in his Mount Vernon, N.Y. residence.
               
Great Organ (Manual I) – 58 notes
8
  Open Diapason
58
2 2/3
  Octave Quint *
58
8
  Viola di Gamba
58
2
  Super Octave *
58
8
  Dulciana *
46
8
  Trumpet *
58
8
  Doppel Flöte
58
   
* lowest 8ve grooved to Doppel Flöte
4
  Octave *
58
   
* enclosed in Swell Box
           
Swell Organ (Manual II) – 58 notes, enclosed
16
  Bourdon (bass & treble) +
58
4
  Gemshorn
58
8
  Violin Diapason
58
4
  Flute Harmonique
58
8
  Dolce
58
  Cornet, 3 ranks
174
8
  Stopped Diapason
58
8
  Oboe
58
   
   
+ split drawknob
Pedal Organ – 30 notes
16
  Open Diapason (wood)
30
8
  Violoncello
30
16
  Bourdon
30
       
               
Accessories
    Swell to Great       Swell to Pedal  
    [Swell to Great 8ves]       Great to Pedal  
               
Mechanical Accessories
    Swell Tremulant       Bellows Signal  
    Eclipse Wind Indicator          
               
Pedal Movements
    Great Organ Forte   Great to Pedal Reversible Coupler
    Great Organ Piano   Balanced Swell Pedal
    Swell Organ Forte    
    Swell Organ Piano    
           
Sources:
     Adams, Michael Henry. Harlem Lost and Found: An Architectural and Social History, 1765-1915. New York: Monacelli Press, 2002.
     Davey, George. Information about the organs at Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist Church.
     Dolkart, Andrew S. and Matthew A. Postal. Guide to New York City Landmarks (Third Edition). New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission. Hoboken: John Wiley & Sons, Inc. 2004.
     Dolkart, Andrew S. and Gretchen S. Sorin. Touring Historic Harlem: Four Walks in Northern Manhattan. New York: New York Landmarks Conservancy, 1997.
     Dunlap, David W. From Abyssinian to Zion: A Guide to Manhattan's Houses of Worship. New York: Columbia University Press, 2004.
     Dunlap, David W. "Steeple on Historic Harlem Church Replaced," The New York Times (Dec. 12, 2006).
     Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist Church web site: http://www.ephesus.org
     Gentry, Glenn A. "A Tale of Two Organs," The American Organist (Mar. 2007). Implied specifications of Hilborne L. Roosevelt organ, Op. 341 (1886).
     Gentry, Glenn A. Correspondence (Oct. 13, 1953) from F.R. Webber relating to Hilborne L. Roosevelt organ, Op. 341 (1886).
     Hickman, Cynthia. Harlem Churches at the End of the 20th Century. New York: Dunbar Press, 2001.
     "Hilborne L. Roosevelt, Manufacturer of Church, Chapel, Concert and Chamber Organs," catalog pub. by Roosevelt Organ Works (Dec. 1888); republished by The Organ Literature Foundation, Braintree, Mass., 1978.
     Ogasapian, John. Organ Building in New York City: 1700-1900. Braintree: The Organ Literature Foundation, 1977.
     Smith, Rollin. The Aeolian Pipe Organ and its Music. Richmond: The Organ Historical Society, 1998.
     Trupiano, Larry. Factory Specifications of Wicks organ, Op. 5383 (1973).
     Trupiano, Larry. Information about the second-hand Aeolian Organ removed after the January 1969 fire.

Illustrations:
     eBay.com. Postcard (1907) of Second Collegiate Reformed Church.
     Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist Church Archives. B&W interior of original church; color interior showing organ case (c.1965); Hilborne L. Roosevelt organ, Op. 341 (1886); Church Hall.
     Lawson, Steven E. Wicks organ, Op. 5383 (1973).
     Price, Alan. Color exterior.
           
| NYC AGO Home Page | Back to NYC Organ Project List |