Holy Trinity Episcopal Church
193 Old Greenville Hwy
Clemson, SC 29631 US
Organ ID: 71464
I will soon be taking over as Organist at this Church, and I played it the second Sunday after it was installed in 2021. This organ replaces a unit Schlicker instrument which was totally unenclosed and had no combination action. The old organ was poorly adapted to the liturgical and musical requirements of the church. I will attempt to research the former instrument further to see if I can get enough information to create a database entry for it.
Neither nameplate states an opus number. I asked the builder about the provenance of the instrument when they were working on tonal finishing, and he said that it was a Baptist church in the upstate of SC, but couldn't remember exactly where off the top of his head. It is possible that this is Schantz Opus 618 (Organ ID 61462) from Sans Souci Baptist Church, although the year on the original nameplate is 1964 and the database has the year 1963. A cursory Facebook search of that church's page indicates a renovation supporting a switch to contemporary worship in the past few years, with possible sale of their pipe organ coinciding. However, it is not clear either way because the presence or absence of an organ console cannot be determined from the few recent pictures of the sanctuary, and the 'before' photos do not show a pipe facade either. Of course, lack of a facade was not uncommon for a 2-manual Schantz organ of this vintage in this area, cf. the organs at both Clemson First Baptist and Clemson UMC. The 20 ranks listed on that instrument versus the 15 present here may be due in part to the reconfiguration during the rebuild or else discrepancies in the definition of 'Rank' used in the counting. Without the original stoplist it is difficult to say.
The organ has been reworked substantially, including a new 8' Principal facade and new chests. The organ is installed in casework behind the altar which also features drawers and cabinets to store liturgical appurtenances, and the swell boxes in particular are quite compact and fairly shallow. The voicing is very fine, with plenty of 8' tone for such a compact instrument, and lends itself well to accompanying both choral works and congregational singing, as well as a variety of organ literature. A criticism might be made that the upperwork is somewhat underdeveloped (especially the lack of a true Mixture), but this can be explained partly by the fact that this instrument was selected as a reaction against a relatively shrill Schlicker organ and also due to the compact nature of the installation. Overall a very fine instrument that I am happy to play.