Quimby Pipe Organs has been engaged by St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church in St. Thomas, Missouri, to restore the Church’s 1897 one-manual and pedal Pfeffer pipe organ. The pipe organ, which has been in the Church since 1897, was shipped down the Osage River on the Steamer Frederick, according to a notation on the inside of the casework. The instrument served the church for approximately eighty years, until it was superseded by a three-rank electro-pneumatic unit organ, which was unceremoniously installed on the Subbass windchest at the rear of the Pfeffer, and on the tuner’s walkboard.
Interestingly, all of the original Pfeffer pipework survives, although some pipework had been borrowed for use in the electro-pneumatic organ. Mechanically, the instrument is also nearly intact, with the only missing components being the wind trunk to the Pedal chest and miscellany associated with the mounting of the pump handle.
Restoration work will be done according to the Organ Historical Society Conservation Guidelines and will include careful repair, cleaning, and regulation of all pipework (which is all original, and is still cone-tuned), replacement of an early twentieth century blower and motor, restoration of the hand-pumping mechanism, releathering of the double-rise reservoir and feeder bellows, replacement of leather nuts and felts, re-graphiting of wood sliders and repairs to table, replacement of missing wood wind trunk to the Pedal windchest, cleaning of all interior components and casework, and complete regulation of the action.
As a part of the restoration, the electro-pneumatic organ will be removed.