Pipe Organ Database

a project of the organ historical society

Rudolph Wurlitzer View Extant Instruments View Instruments


Established Rudolph Wurlitzer Manufacturing Co., 1856;
Classification: Undetermined

Update This Entry
October 02, 2015:

For further information see Rudolph Wurlitzer Manufacturing Co.

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

August 13, 2015:

Born Jan. 30, 1831, Schöneck, Saxony [Germany]-d. Jan. 14, 1914, Cincinnati, Ohio; emigrated to the US in 1853, settling in Cincinnati. He began dealing in musical instruments, By 1861 he was no longer able to fill all his orders with instruments imported from Germany, and he established a factory in Cincinnati that primarily produced band instruments for military use.

In 1865 a branch was established in Chicago, and in March 1890 the firm was incorporated as the Rudolph Wurlitzer Company, with its founder serving as president (1890-1912) and chairman of the board (1912-14).

His eldest son and successor, Howard Eugene (b. 1871 - d. 1928), joined the firm in 1889 and became president (1912-27) and chairman (1927-28). Rudolph Henry Wurlitzer (b.1873 -d. 1948), Rudolph-s second son, studied violin in Berlin and became interested in violin construction. His training led to the establishment of the Wurlitzer Collection of Rare Violins. Rudolph Henry was active in the company from 1894 and served as president (1927-32) and chairman (1932-42). The third son, Farny Reginald Wurlitzer (b. 1883-d. 1972), was educated in the art and technique of producing modern musical instruments. He returned to Cincinnati in 1904 and in 1909 moved to North Tonawanda, N.Y., to head the manufacturing division that was formed after the purchase of DeKleist, manufacturers of barrel organs. He was president (1932-41), chairman (1942-66), and chairman emeritus (1966-72) of the company. It was during his tenure that Wurlitzer entered the theater organ business.

"Wurlitzer Family". Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. Encyclopædia Britannica Inc., 2015. Web. Accessed 02 Oct. 2015 .
We received the most recent update for this note from Database Manager on February 11, 2019.

October 30, 2004:

From the OHS PC Database, derived from A Guide to North America Organ Builders by David H. Fox (Organ Historical Society, 1991). -- Father of Farny R., Howard E. and Rudolph H. Wurlitzer; brother of Constantine Wurlitzer; established Rudolph Wurlitzer Manufacturing Co., 1856; died at age 83.

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

Database Specs:

  • 42 Organs
  • 2 Divisions
  • 2 Consoles

This builder has been viewed 777 times.