December 3 2006

Press Release: Great-grandfather's Organ Donated to Museum in Time for Exhibit Opening

Early this past Sunday morning a hand made cherry organ was returned to Wayne County by the maker’s great-granddaughter and donated to the Wayne County Historical Society. Carol Miller Moon, her husband Ronald, and their three sons (pictured beside the organ) carefully dismantles, packed, transported from Lewsitown, Pennsylvania to the society’s 810 Main Street, Honesdale museum, and reassembled their family treasure for it to be included in an exhibit entitled, “Working With Then & Now”. The exhibit opens this Saturday, April 8th. The public is invited to attend free of charge between 00 and 7:00 PM. Refreshments will be served.

Beginning in 1851, Robert Lovelass started making the organ entirely by hand with the exception of the keyboard, twenty-eight lead pipes, and a few turned pieces in the case. The lumber was obtained from cherry trees which grew on the Lovelass farm in Calkins. PA., logs cut in a nearby sawmill, and planed by hand. It took Mr. Lovelass two years to complete his labor of love.

There are one hundred and four wooden pipes which range in size form ½” square by 7” high to 4 ½” square by 48” high, twenty-two lead pipes, and twenty-one ornamental wooden pipes which are painted with gold leaf. The organ was operated by bellows, with the player using the feet. Mrs. Moon remembers playing the organ in her youth.

Robert Lovelass was born in England in 1814, came to Philadelphia with his father in 1833, and moved to what is now know as Calkins, Wayne County where they established a farm in 1835. He was a cabinet maker by trade, and musician. Robert was the father of Charles Lovelass (1853-1937) of Milanville from whom Carol descends. Carol’s brother Gary D. Miller of Englewood, Florida first approached the society’s Director Sally Talaga in the summer of 2005 to inquire if the society would be interested in the piece.

Also included in this exhibit are several pieces of furniture made by Alanson Blood (1806 – 1885) a Honesdale cabinet maker and hand carved eagles made by former Honesdale Mayor and restaurant owner Richard Kreitner.

The exhibit will hang through 2006 and can be seen Wednesday through Saturday form 00 AM to 4:00 PM and Sundays, noon to 4:00 PM, June 25th through October. A small entrance fee is charged to non member adults.