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The Realm of Music, North Tonawanda Barrel Organ Factory, article and transcriptions (Tonawanda News, 1894-01-04)


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Title

The Realm of Music, North Tonawanda Barrel Organ Factory, article and transcriptions (Tonawanda News, 1894-01-04).jpg

Description

Transcription by Dana Johnson:

 The Realm Of Music

Where harmony producing instruments are manufactured

Home of the organ works

Only industry of this kind established in the United States

Everything About the Institution Known - …the North Tonawanda Barrel Organ Factory

Now Located at East Avenue – How This Novel Industry Came to Be Added to City’s Attractions - The Well-Known Firm of Armitage, Herschell & Co. Projected the Enterprise - … Brought It to a Successful Completion - A Brilliant Future Before It.

 __st on the outskirts of North Tonawanda awaiting with confident expectation the onward march of time to raise from a little hamlet to more pretentious Proportions, stands the pretty suburb of  _?_ city, Sawyer Creek or more properly East avenue, and here, like a pioneer on the edge of civilization is located an elegant three story brick structure of hansom appearance over which the stars and stripes float gaily on the -breeze. The com_?_lous home of an industry comparatively unfamiliar to the great majority of  citizens, but already attaining a world wide reputation under the name of the North Tonawanda  Barrel Organ Factory. 

Although but a few months have passed ___ this novel enterprise was projected  _?_  placed in operation under the _?_ management of Mr. E DeKleist it has become one of the most important important industries of our growing city, and with the markets of the whole world in which to dispose of it's products it is destined to achieve an unprecedented success, and make it's name, and consequently the name of North Tonawanda known throughout the civilized globe.

No place in the United States is there another industry of this kind, and no place in the world is there one that uses its methods of production which enables this institution to compete successfully with the barrel organ factories of the countries across the sea. Its modus operundi is exclusively its own -- rendered so by the genius and talents of its manager, a large part of the machinery in use being the inventions of his fertile mind.

The building which is the home of this current enterprise was erected at a cost of $40,000 by the firm of Armitage, Herschell-& Co., to whose influence and energy is due the establishment of a barrel organ factory at North Tonawanda. Ever on the lookout for means by which to promote the growth and prosperity of the city, these gentleman evolved the scheme which has proven such a distinct triumph and taking the matter in hand with their characteristic activity, carried it to a successful completion. To Armitage, Herschell & Co., therefore, in conjunction with Mr. DeKleist, belongs the credit for adding the barrel organ factory to North Tonawanda's large list of manufacturies, and this fact alone is one of which they may feel justifiably proud.

 A Sketch of the Presiding genius.

Mr. E. DeKleist, who controls the destinies of this enterprise as proprietor  and general manager, in a genial open-hearted, wholesouled individual - a typical German gentleman, whom it is a pleasure to know. Under his excellent guidance 'The News” representatives spent a most enjoyable hour surveying the wonders contained in the building and received valuable instruction regarding the work of such musical instruments.

Mr. DeKleist's genius for inventing has given him much labor-saving machinery and thereby placed him in a position to compete with similar factories of the old countries. The first two organs he constructed have sailed across the water - the first to Bombay. India, and the second to Austria.

Born in in Germany in the year 1853, Mr. DeKleist grew to maturity on the shores of the Fatherland. He received a thorough education at the Gymnasium Royal, where he imbibed those principals which have fitted him for a worthy manhood. From this institution of learning he entered the Royal Military School at Berlin and afterwards served sometime in the French and German Armies.

In 1885 he first entered into mercantile pursuits and it was then that he laid the foundation for what has been a successful business career. His first venture was with the famous manufacturers of musical instruments, Limonaire Bros., of Paris, and he continued with them for several years, part of which were spent in London, where he conducted a branch store for this firm. In 1892 he came to America as their representative and has since made his home in the United States.

He was married to Miss Charlotte Chelius of Lunberg, Germany in 1878 Mr. and Mrs. DeKleist have an interesting little family of four children and a cozy home at East Ave.

How It Came About

 One of the most important department of Armitage, Herschell & Co's works for a long period has been the manufacturing of pleasure machines know as “merry-go-rounds”. Those turned out by this firm have achieved an enviable reputation for being the most perfect, and durable to be obtained, and the consequent demand for them has been very extensive.

As well known to those who enjoy the dizzy delights of merry-go-rounds, their revolutions are accompanied by musical harmonies produced by a barrel organ attached to the machinery. This fact made Armatige, Herschell & Co. customers for these instruments and when Mr. DeKleist  came to America in 1892 representing the French manufacturers, he sold to this firm barrels organs to the amount of $ 25,000.

It was about this time that the idea suggested itself to Armitage, Herschell & Co., that the organs might be manufactured in this country at a much more advantageous  figure than that which the transatlantic instruments could be purchased, and in accordance with this idea negotiations were entered into with Mr. DeKleist which finally resulted in the establishment of The North Tonawanda Barrel Organ Works.

Mr. DeKleist arrived in North Tonawanda in November 1892,  and active preparations for the erection of a buildings and procuring machinery were at once begun. The preliminaries involved seven months time, but at last, when June 1893 arrived everything was in readiness for operation. A commodious brick building was erected by Armitage, Herschell & Co., at the cost of $40,000, all necessary adjuncts to the manufactory were in place, and Mr. DeKleist proceeded to build his first barrel organ. 

The Home of the Enterprise

The factory is pleasantly located at East Ave. surrounded by a stretch of inviting country. It is in constant operation, and it's activity is attended to by clouds of smoke whirling skyward, and the busy whir of machinery within. To an individual who possesses a desire for the novel, it is replete with interest from the entrance to the top of the floor, and much useful knowledge may be gleaned from an hours visit.

The whole affair is under the personal supervision of Mr. DeKleist, while under  him is an intelligent foreman, and an able corps of assistants. Mr. Charles Nilson occupies this position of general foreman with an efficient lieutenant in the person of Mr. Edward Rack. The heads of various departments are: John Wymann, engineer;

W. Schwencke, wood-turner; Charles Fehrmann, voicer; M. Mathemm, finisher;  

Albert F. Klemer, and Christ Maerien, pipe makers; Wm. Jaenecke, carpenter and joiner.

The factory at present employs about 30 hands and turns out one organ per week.

During the Summer, however, Mr. DeKleist expects to run to its full capacity and produce an organ complete every day. These are worth on an average of $ 500 each.

The First Floor

Upon entering the building the first to claim attention is the engine room at the north end. This is 70 x 40 feet in area and contains a 45-horsepower  engine and boiler, manufactured by the Armitage, Herschell & Co., which furnishes the motive power for the establishment. From it runs a single 6-inch pipe by which the entire building is heated. A small Westinghouse dynamo produces electric light. This was placed in position by Wilson & Wilson, well known electricians in North Tonawanda.

From here the main room is entered and a network of shafts and belting greats the eye. The machinery contained in this room consists of 2 circular saws,  a cut-off saw, 2 band saws,  1 scroll saw, 2 large boring machines,  1 emory machine for polishing, wood-toothing machine, a stop manufacturing machine for making brass organ pins, 2 large iron lathes, a wood-turning machine. This room is 40 x 100 feet in dimensions.

At the south end of the building is the office, nicely furnished with office fixtures.

 The Second Floor

The most interesting part of the building is the second story. Here is where organ cylinders are marked for the insertion of brass pins, where these pins are deftly inserted by nimble fingered girls, where the cases are made and where the organs are put together.

It is in this department that some of the machines invented by Mr. DeKleist  are used and their efficiency when explained by the inventor becomes clearly apparent.

 Twenty-two employed are kept busy here at the different machines and is the casing room.

The Third Floor

The third story is occupied by the finishing and voicing, or tuning departments, and storage rooms

The voicing room contains a machine for manufacturing organ reeds and the tuning is also done by machinery.

Music's Realm

Having once more reached the first floor the “News” representatives were treated to a sort of impromptu concert, furnished by one of the organs manufactured at this establishment. As the delicious strains paraded the building, and well known airs greeted the visitors ears, they unanimously decided that the manufacture of such harmony-producing instruments was an art still beyond their ken, and that its mysteries were but slightly elucidated by the superficial insight they had been given by Mr. DeKleist.

Looking Ahead

There is certainly a great future in store for the North Tonawanda Barrel Organ Works and it can only be question of a few years until the present capacity of the plant will need to be doubled to meet the increasing demand for the instrument.

There is a later version of this article from June 4 of 1894. Here is my transcription of that:

 

MUSIC'S REALM:

The Organ Works at North Tonawanda

One of the Big Industries

The Only Establishment of the Kind in the United States - Where Harmony Producing Instruments are Manufactured-Sketch of Mr. De Kleist, the Proprietor and Manager.

In a pretty suburb of this city, named Sawyer's Creek, there is situated the only barrel organ and orchestra manufactory in the United States. it is owned and managed by one of the best business men in America, Mr. E. DeKleist. The gentleman is a thorough musician, and the instruments that he manufactures have a reputation for their sweetness of tone and excellent manner in which they are constructed. Mr. DeKleist, recognizing the fact that durability is an essential feature in the manufacture of all kinds of goods, selects nothing but the very best kind of materials for his use, and as a consequence every organ that goes out of his shop is a splendid advertisement for him. In all things this genial, ambitious German is business-like, and it is no wonder that he succeeds in his business. Mr. DeKleist, since he moved to North Tonawanda, has been one of the foremost of our citizens in the work of advancing the interests of the twin cities.

 The following is a description of the organ manufactory at Sawyer's Creek.

The First Floor

Upon entering the building the first to claim attention is the engine room at the north end. This is [unclear text; 41x40?] feet in area and contains a 45-horsepower engine and boiler, manufactured by Armitage, Herschell & Co., which furnishes the motive power for the establishment. From it runs a single 6-inch pipe, by which the entire building is heated. A small Westinghouse dynamo produces electric light. This was placed in position by Wilson & Wilson, well-known electricians of North Tonawanda.

From here the main room in (sic) entered, and a network of shafts and belting greets the eye. the machinery contained in this room consists of 3 circular saws, a cut off saw, 2 band saws, 1 scroll [?] saw, 2 large boring machines, 1 emory machine for polishing, wood-toothing machine, a stop manufacturing machine, for making brass organ pins, 2 large iron lathes, a wood-turning machine. This room is 40x 100 feet in dimensions.

At the south end of the building is the business office, nicely furnished with fixtures.

The Second Floor

The most interesting part of the building is the second story. Here is where organ cylinders are marked for the insertion of brass pins, where these pins are deftly inserted by nimble-fingered girls, where the cases are made and where the organs are put together.

It is in this department that some of the machines invented by Mr. DeKleist are used and their efficiency when explained by the inventor becomes clearly apparent.

A large number of employees are kept busy here at the different machines and in the casing room.

 The Third Floor

The third story is occupied by the finishing and voicing, or tuning departments, and storage rooms.

The voicing room contains a machine for manufacturing organ reeds and the tuning is also done by machinery.

Mr. DeKleist has lately added a lumber storehouse and [dry?] kiln, and the manufactory will have to be enlarged within the year, owing to the rapidly increasing demand for the organs.

Date

1894-01-04