Saw this in Santa Paula this afternoon. Price tag is $400, and they are going out of business. I suspect this may be connected, and is prior to the car co., as it says Ft. Wayne, Ind.
I might buy it, but we have no room for it.
The Packard family had an electrical supply company in Warren Ohio, in the early 1880's James Ward Packard made his fortune when he patented an improved light bulb & sold the rights to Westinghouse, retaining royalties. In 1899 He bought a Winton automobile, when he complained to Alexander Winton about the performance of the car, Winton told him "If you think you can build a better car, do it" (He said something similar to Henry Ford).
He also invented the first reliable spark plug cable. The name Packard Cable still appears on Delco wires. He also had patents on things we take for granted, the steering wheel & H shifting pattern to name a few.
As far as the Organ, for 400 bucks I'd go for it, if for nothing else trying to figure out what the Latin on the plugs mean.
Rick,that toy might be a bit heavy for the T pickup,you may want to get Ray or Hal to haul that on their TT.:>)
If it was near Cincy - I'd buy it in a heartbeat.
Organs are a great musical item to have.They're fun to play.If it is in good working condition,the price is very reasonable.If it barely wheezes,they can be all over the board price wise to restore.In their heyday,they were the "poor man's piano".Their construction is mostly wood,leather,and different animal skins for the pneumatics.The reeds are usually brass.Everything is put together with hyde glue so storage over the years is important for survival.
If you buy it,test every key on the board for function.Play some notes or chords and check all the "stops"(these are the black plungers) to see that they perform their specific function.You shouldn't have to pump the crap out of it to make it work if it is in good woorking order.The more notes played at once,the more you will have to pump though.Nice thing is they don't need tuning like a piano every 6 months.Just a nice flow of the feet,about 1 second per pump roughly.
This example is a nice one visually.A lot of them are very victorian/gothic looking.This one isn't too overly ornate.A nice feature I think.
I'm not an expert on organs,but have owned them and restore antique music boxes and phonographs,and sometimes,player pianos.
Good luck and enjoy it if you buy it!
The organ co. dates back to 1817. Their parents were from England but lived further east and moved to Chicago. After the fire they moved to Ohio. The co. was sold in 1938.
Could't/didn't find out if the car guy was related to the musical instrument guys.
Pump organs are relatively light weight. I have a 1902 Cornish brand parlor organ that belonged to my great-grandparents. Moves quite easily for cleaning out the mouse carcasses and such that gather under it.
I would guess this one is not real heavy, judging by the handles. The style is 1890s Eastlake.
As I wrote above, I would buy it, but have absolutely no place to put it.
Here is an article about the history of Packard organs and pianos. I do not believe there is any direct link between this company and Packard Motor Co.
...By KEVIN LEININGER
from the archives of The Fort Wayne News-Sentinel
The Great Chicago Fire may have been the best thing that ever happened to Fort Wayne music lovers.
That may sound strange, but consider this: one of the people who lost everything when the blaze leveled the Windy City on Oct. 9, 1871, was organ-maker Isaac T. Packard.
Legend has it that Packard boarded the next train east and told the conductor to let him off when his money ran out. Packard got as far as Fort Wayne, where he started the Fort Wayne Organ Co. on Nov. 20 1871. The Fort Wayne Organ Co. in 1899 changed its name to the Packard Piano Co., which, judging by the number of inquiries received by the Allen County Library, may just be Fort Wayne' most fondly remembered industry of them all.
The Fort Wayne Organ Co. set up shop on Fairfield Avenue and began manufacturing ``organs which are the most beautiful, attractive and simple in construction of any organ ever offered,'' according to a story in the Fort Wayne Gazette in March 1881. The newspaper reported that the locally built instruments possess a clear, brilliant and sweet tone and were especially popular among missionaries.
So popular were the Packard-built reed organs that England's Queen Victoria supposedly purchased one.
Unfortunately for Packard, there were not that many queens or missionaries around. The company saw that pianos would be a more salable item and began making them in 1893. The name-change followed six years later.
The company became quite successful, hitting its high note in the 1920s. At its peak, the Packard Piano Co. employed more than 300 people at its Fairfield plant.
Then the boom of the 1920s turned into the Depression of the 1930s, and the Packard Piano Co. fell on hard times. The last piano rolled out of the Packard plant on Feb. 6, 1930. The Packard trademark was used by other manufacturers, but the instrument was never again made in Fort Wayne.
Packard Piano Co. was noteworthy in that it was one of the first factories to institute labor reform. Under its ``industrial Democracy'' program, workdays were shortened to eight hours, working conditions were improved and employees were given better pay for fewer hours of work. The result was an instrument still prized by owners of a brand once respected nationwide but based in Fort Wayne.
The Packard Piano factory was torn down in the early 1930s. The city park department purchased the land in 1937 and today Packard Park stands where Fort Wayne's most musical industry once stood.
--Nov. 21, 1981
One of my tin boxes from the collected automibilia. According to the bottom line on the box, as Alex verified, General Motors had acquired the company.