Los Angeles Art Organ Company
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The Los Angeles Art Organ Company was based, as its name suggests, in Los Angeles, California. The firm was the successor to the Murray M. Harris Organ Co., which was reorganized following Harris's ouster from the company. William Boone Fleming was the Factory Supervisor. The Los Angeles Art Organ Co. operated only from around 1903 to 1905 at which point it was moved to Hoboken, New Jersey and renamed the Electrolian Organ Company, with Eben Smith as its president.
The biggest accomplishment of the Los Angeles Art Organ Company during its very short lifespan was the creation of the lavish instrument that was on display in Festival Hall at the 1904 St. Louis World's Fair. The instrument was the largest in the world at the time of its construction and contained more than 10,000 pipes. The organ, even though it wasn't completed on time and was only partially functional during the first weeks of the fair (due in large part to the enormous financial burden the construction was placing on the firm), was played by some of the most famous virtuosos of the time. Most notably is probably Felix Alexandre Guilmant (see Alexandre Guilmant) who played a series of 40 concerts in a six-week period. The organ was extremely well received and the Los Angeles Art Organ Company was awarded a gold medal from the World's Fair for its construction. This instrument is now installed in Philadelphia, PA and serves as the core of the famous Wanamaker Grand Court Organ.
Another prominent organ by the Los Angeles Art Organ Co. is in Congregation Sherith Israel in San Francisco.
- Biswanger, Ray. Music in the Marketplace. Bryn Mawr: Friends of the Wanamaker Organ Press, 1999.