The Old Church

Image by Strode-Eckert Photography

Image by Strode-Eckert Photography

Portland, Oregon

Historic restoration of Hook & Hastings, 1893
II / 18 stops • 20 ranks


This instrument, the oldest in the Pacific Northwest still in its original building, was built in 1883 by Hook & Hastings for Calvary Presbyterian Church.  The church was sold in the 1930’s.  Evangel Baptist Church bought the building in 1948 and First Southern Baptist Church bought it in 1951.  By 1968, the church was threatened with demolition and The Old Church Society was formed in 1969 to own and operate the building as a lecture, concert, and wedding venue.  The church continues in this usage to the present day.  There is a regular series of noontime sack lunch recitals, featuring local organists and other instrumentalists. 

At some point in the past, the organ was re-pitched at A-440 from its original high pitch and the original reed stops disappeared at this time.  One pipe from the original Great Trumpet was discovered by Bond Organ Builders, mixed in with another Trumpet from a different organ.  By the 1970’s the instrument was nearly unplayable.  A conference featuring Charles Fisk and Barbara Owen was held at the church in 1976 and the organ repaired sufficiently to be playable, including the releathering the reservoir.  An 8’ Trumpet made by Ryder was installed in the Great division by Mr. Fisk and Ms. Owen.

The instrument was restored in 1996 by Bond Organ Builders.  The façade pipes, originally stenciled and subsequently painted gold, were re-stenciled in the original pattern, as determined from old photographs.  The casework, which had been painted white and then stripped to bare wood, was refinished in a natural color.  A new blower was installed and the original hand bellows restored.  Finally, a Hook & Hastings Oboe from the 1890’s was obtained and installed in the Swell division.



16’ Bourdon
8’ Open Diapason
8’ Melodia
8’ Dulciana
4’ Octave
3’ Twelfth
2’ Fifteenth
III Mixture
8’ Trumpet


8’ Open Diapason
8’ Stopped Diapason
8’ Viola
4’ Flauto Traverso
4’ Violina
2’ Flautino
8’ Oboe/Bassoon


16’ Open Diapason
16’ Bourdon


Great to Pedal
Swell to Pedal 
Swell to Great