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Jewett Pipe Organ

Homepage: Jewett Auditorium at the College of Idaho, in Caldwell

Organ Specs: Organ Specs

Exterior Picture: exterior


Organ History:

Casavant Completed at the College of Idaho 1961

Casavant Freres Limitee completed the installation of a new three-manual classic organ in Jewett Chapel-Auditorium at the College of Idaho, Caldwell, Idaho in 1961. The organ is a gift of George Frederick Jewett, Jr. in memory of his father George Frederick Jewett, Sr., formerly president and chairman of the board of Potlatch Forests, Inc.

Close cooperation between the organ builder, the architects and acoustical engineers from the earliest planning of the new 850 seat auditorium has resulted in an installation of superior sound characteristics. The acoustical firm of Bolt, Beranek and Newman designed the stage and ceiling “clouds,” constructed of hardwood baffles placed to give proper deflection of sound, and the three-dimensional back wall designed to break up the sound into a variety of patterns.

Lawrence Phelps of Casavant designed the organ in consultation with Dr. Richard Skyrm, chairman of the College of Idaho music department, and Chapel organist. The installation was by George Graham of Spokane, Washington, with final voicing under the direction of Mr. Phelps.

The construction and location of the organ has been made with a view towards its maximum utilization in solo recitals, small and large ensembles, in chapel and convocation exercises, and as an accompanying and teaching instrument. The console is capable of being moved to any point on the large stage.

Tonal specifications comprise thirty-six independent stops, employing 38 ranks over 3 keyboards of 61 notes and 32 pedals. No “borrowing” or extension work between the various divisions has been permitted. All pipes are unnicked and sound under extremely low wind pressures.

Dr. Skyrm opened with a formal dedication recital, October 14, on the yet uncompleted instrument. The first guest artist recital was given be E. Power Biggs in late November. The organ will be featured in the Northwest Regional A.G.O. convention to held in mid-June.

In August of 2000, two ranks of pipes left unfinished because of lack of funds in the original installation were completed by Rene Marceau Associates of Portland, the current Casavant Northwest representative. The completion cost almost equaled the original investment of $43,000. A Bourdon 16 (instead of a Quintade 16 as noted on the draw knob) and a Trompete 8 were added with funds provided by the George Frederick Jewett Foundation, a Cultural Facilities Grant from the Idaho Commission on the Arts, Charlotte Runions Memorial Funds, the Attebery-Hunt Duo Piano Recital and individual donors. The instrument contains 2,575 pipes ranging in length from less than one inch to sixteen feet. They are made from a variety of materials: mahogany, pine, fir, zinc, and an alloy of tin and lead called “spotted metal.” For Jewett stage productions, the pipes are covered by a black velour curtain.


Last updated: November 09, 2014