The OHS Pipe Organ Database

BuilderID 5364

Builder Identification

Chicago and DeKalb, Illinois from 1856 through 1940s.

Additional Notes

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

    Established by Rudolph Wurlitzer, 1856, importers and manufacturers of various musical instruments; with locations in Chicago and DeKalb, Illinois, and in Germany; merged with Eugene De Kleist's North Tonawanda, {New York} Barrel Organ Co., self-playing instruments, 1909; acquired the Hope-Jones Organ Co., pipe organs, of Elmira, New York in 1910; the firm did not resume pipe organ work after World War II.

    Staff: David Arthur; Claude B. Ball; Earl J. Beach; Chester Beebe; Ellis Beilharz; Walter Berry; Raymond Bohr; S. Bowker; D. C. Brooke; Henry J. Carruthers; Joseph J. Carruthers; Thomas P. Clancy; Manly Cockcroft; John J. Colton; H. A. Covert; Cudney; B. C. Da Shiell; A. Eberbach; Robert P. Elliot; Augustus C. Ely; Stanley H. Fargher; Forton; Frank; Gamonski; Amelia Geser; Stella Geser; Grimes; Jack Hirst; H. Louis Hollingsworth, Jr.; Robert Hope-Jones; Herbert Alvin Houze; Albert E. Jarvis; A. J. Jasper; W. Meakin Jones; Thomas Kassay; Alfred G. Kilgen; George Leathurby; J. B. Lewis; Eugene Licome; Albert E. Lloyd; Lobdeil; Louis Maas; I. H. Lyons; H. W. McSpadden; Joseph A. Malotte; A. D. March; David Marr; Frank H. Marshall; J. R. McKay; William K. McMillen; Milicinky; Miller; A. G. Morrison; J. P. Muller; Augustus Notterman; Gus Noterman; James H. Nuttall; Pezare; Oswald Pfeil; (Jerzy?) Polukanis; William Potter; Reddell; Clarence Reynolds; Thomas Ruggles; G. M. Russell; Salter; Herman L. Schlicker; Schultz; Philip Sheridan; Smith; Fred W. Smith; William C. Smith; Harjung Tchakarian; Arthur R. Temple; E. H. Uhl; Vigrass; (Edwin Webb?); J. Alfred Webb; Joseph G. Webb; Weinke; White; Gustave Widor-Ronfort; Fred C. Wood; Wrege; Constantine Wurlitzer; Farny R. Wurlitzer; Howard E. Wurlitzer; Rudolph H. Wurlitzer.


    • The Diapason April 1925, 8.
    • Piano and Organ Purchaser-s Guide, Purchaser-s Guide to the Music Industries, (New York City: Music Trades).

  • From the OHS Database Builders Listing editor, April 14, 2016 -

    In 1910 the Wurlitzer Company acquired the Hope-Jones Organ Company of Elmira, N.Y., moving its operations to North Tonawanda. It was there that the pipe organ known as the

    "Unit Orchestra" and later famous as the "Mighty Wurlitzer" was developed.

    With the advent of motion pictures the "Mighty Wurlitzer" theatre organ grew in popularity; it soon appeared as part of the elaborate furnishings in the new movie palaces. Equipped with the sound effects of brass trumpets, tubas, clarinets, oboes, chimes, xylophones, drums, and many other tone colours, the instrument proved to be an attraction in itself." —"Wurlitzer Family", Encyclopædia Britannica Online.


    • "Wurlitzer Family". Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. Encyclopædia Britannica Inc., 2015. accessed October 2, 2015,

Database Entries

There are 32 entries in the database that describe organs by Rudolph Wurlitzer Manufacturing Co.

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