The OHS Pipe Organ Database

BuilderID 3777

Builder Identification

Los Angeles, California, 1903–1905, relocated to Hoboken, New Jersey, as Art Organ Co., 1905, then Electrolian Organ Co., 1906

Additional Notes

  • From the OHS PC Database, derived from A Guide to North American Organbuilders by David H. Fox (Organ Historical Society, 1991). —

    Succeeded Murray M. Harris Organ Co.; established in Los Angeles, California, 1903; relocated to Hoboken, New Jersey, as Electrolian Organ Co., 1906; closed shortly thereafter.

    Staff: Frederick C. Bolton, Jr.; F. R. Coffin; Edward L. Crome; Charles Ducommun; William B. Fleming; Edward T. Howe; Charles C. Lapham; John G. Mott; Thomas Ross; Eben W. Smith; William Tynne; John W. Whiteley; Stanley W. Williams.

    Sources:

    • Bicentennial Tracker (Organ Historical Society, 1976), 119.
    • Jim Lewis
    • Piano and Organ Purchaser’s Guide, Purchaser’s Guide to the Music Industries, (published by Music Trades, New York). 

     

  • From the OHS Database Builders Listing editor, November 5, 2016. —

    The Los Angeles Art Organ Co. was the successor to the Murray M. Harris Organ Co. Harris was forced out the company he founded by the stockbrokers when the company reached a financial breaking point under the strain of building the enormous organ for the Louisiana Purchase Exposition of 1904 (better known today as the St Louis World's Fair). In 1905, the stockholders of the Los Angeles Art Organ Company, primarily Eben Smith and William Fleming, incorporated the Electrolian Organ Company under New Jersey law, acquired the assets of the Los Angeles Art Organ Company and moved the operations from Los Angeles to Hoboken, New Jersey.

    In 1907, Eben Smith died and the company went on the auction block. The Wirsching Organ Company of Salem, Ohio then acquired the assets of the Electrolian Organ Company, and its subsidiary the Los Angeles Art Organ Company, moved the equipment and inventory to Salem and dissolved the company. Wirsching retained the lease on the New York showroom at 535 Fifth Ave., site of the present Empire State Building, and completed the contract for the Maharaja of Mysore. Stanley Williams was employed by Electrolian and was one of the three employees retained by Wirsching. After installing the India organ and spending a short time in Salem as a voicer, he eventually went to California and worked for Murray Harris, and its line of successor firms: Johnston Organ, California Organ Co., and Robert Morton of Van Nuys, California. Many of the former Murray Harris staff drifted gradually back to California, and followed the same path, remaining with a company that changed owners and names, but kept the same location and essentially the same staff.

    Sources:

    • James Stark

     

  • Suggested for further reading:
    • James Lewis, The Los Angeles Art Organ Company
    • Booklet: The Los Angeles Art Organ Company (Friends of the Wanamaker Organ, Inc.)

Database Entries

There are 7 entries in the database that describe organs by Los Angeles Art Organ Co.


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