Pipe Organ Database

a project of the organ historical society

Charles Hobart Pilcher View Extant Instruments View Instruments

Distinction:

New Orleans, Louisiana, 1884-1894; Brooklyn, New York? c. 1901; New Orleans, 1906-1912.
Classification: Builder

Update This Entry
February 23, 2016:

See Pilcher Family - Overview for a simplified family tree and a list of Pilcher firms.
 

We received the most recent update for this note from Database Manager on April 29, 2019.

February 23, 2016:

Sources:

  1. Bynum Petty, Henry Pilcher's Sons: Opus List and Historical Sketch, (LULU Press 2014)
  2. Jonathan Hall, "Present and Accounted for: Pilcher Activity in Brooklyn Circa 1900", The Tracker, Vol. 53, No. 2, Spring 2009.
  3. John H. Baron, Concert Life in Nineteenth-Century New Orleans (LSU Press, Dec 9, 2013) p. 261.

We received the most recent update for this note from Database Manager on April 09, 2020.

February 23, 2016:

For further reading:

Bynum Petty, Henry Pilcher's Sons: Opus List and Historical Sketch, (OHS Press 2014). Available through the OHS catalog.

We received the most recent update for this note from Database Manager on April 09, 2020.

February 14, 2016:

From the OHS Database Builders editor, updated and revised using information from sources below. —

 

Charles Hobart Pilcher (1864-1912) was born in Chicago, Illinois; the third son of William Pilcher, and grandson of the senior Henry Pilcher. He was therefore part of the third generation of Pilchers to build organs in the United States. (see Pilcher Family - Overview)

Charles was born shortly after the family had moved to Chicago from St. Louis to escape the unrest of the Civil War in a border state. When the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 destroyed the Pilcher Brothers business, his father William and uncle Henry parted ways. William attempted to re-establish the business in Chicago, gave up after three years and moved the family back to St. Louis, Missouri. After William was unsuccessful in reviving the family firm there, the family moved south, settling in New Orleans, Louisiana.1 Now in his mid-twenties, Charles started again with his father's new venture in organ building. William revived the name Pilcher Brothers in New Orleans in 1887, the name he and his brother Henry had used in Chicago. This venture lasted the longest of William's efforts, nearly thirteen years before closing in 1900. While employed with his father's latest incarnation of the Pilcher Brothers, Charles sought other employment, he was teaching in 1893 and 1895; perhaps to help with the budget of the struggling firm. It is not known for cetain what Charles did from 1896 until 1906; Jonathan Hall places William and Charles in Brooklyn in 1901.2 By 1906, he was partner with his father in Wm. & Chas. H. Pilcher of New Orleans. (1906-1910). When that venture failed in 1910, Charles joined his brother Albert at the Philip Werlein firm of New Orleans.3 Charles Hobart Pilcher took his own life on June 1 1912, the same year his father died.

We received the most recent update for this note from Database Manager on October 25, 2019.

October 30, 2004:

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

Born 1864 in Chicago, Illinois; son of William Pilcher; with his father's firm, New Orleans, Louisiana, 1887-1900. Partner with his father in Wm. & Chas. H. Pilcher, New Orleans Louisiana, 1906-1910; with Philip Werlein firm of New Orleans, 1910-12. died, (suicide) June 1. 1912.

Sources:

  • United States Federal Census records.
  • The Diapason July 1912, 7.
  • One or more local directories of the place and period.
  • Elizabeth Towne Schmitt.
  • Times-Picayne June 2, 1912 

We received the most recent update for this note from Database Manager on October 25, 2019.

Database Specs:

  • 0 Organs
  • 0 Divisions
  • 0 Consoles

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