Milnar Organ 



The Episcopal Church of the Nativity

Huntsville, AL

Project Completed 1990


The Church of the Nativity is located in the beautiful historic district near downtown Huntsville. Nativity was having problems with the console of their 1946 Aeolian-Skinner and wanted to make some other improvements. They contacted many organ companies and had many opinions. The more they discussed the many options, the more confused they became. We were asked to conduct a study of the present condition of the organ, its roll in the church, and the acoustics of the sanctuary. The church felt our report was precise and our recommendations practical. We were asked to bid on the work and later were awarded the contract.

Redesigning a historic organ in a historic church is no small task. The pipe scales fit the building well, and the organ had a good foundation but was lacking in color and brilliance. The console, known for its great comfort, had a limited number of pistons, and its combination action was worn and failing. Because of the fine quality of the console shell and ivory keyboards, they were retained and rebuilt. The combination action was replaced with 32 levels of memory. We retained all the original pipe work, carefully measuring scales and taking decibel readings enabling us to match the new pipes to the original. There was not enough room to make the additions in the existing space.

The result was a new exposed Great division cantilevered about two feet beyond the existing arch into the choir area. We also brought the 16' Principal into the arch on the congregation side. The casework was made to match the existing woodwork in the church, and the quadrafoil design so prominent in the building was incorporated into our case. The organ originally spoke into the choir area only, and we added a second set of shades on the Swell and Choir divisions facing the congregation. The church felt that the project was very successful. Mr. John Lewis gave the dedicatory recital.

Church of the Nativity in Huntsville, AL


Great  Swell
16’ Quintaton 8’ Flute Harmonique 
8’ Principal 32’ Resultant
8’ Gedeckt 8’ Dulciana
4’ Octave 8’ Unda Maris
4’ Hohlflute 4’ Gemshorn
2 2/3’ Twelfth 4’ Nachthorn
2’ Principal 2 2/3’ Nazard
1’ 1/3, IV Mixture 2’ Blockflute
8’ Trumpet 1 3/5’ Tierce
8’ Festival Trumpet  1’ III Mixture
4'  Hautbois 8’ Crommhorne De-Bois
4' Flute 8’ Trumpet 
4' Principal 8' Octave
8' Geigen 8' Flute
8' Stopped Diapason 8' Oboe
8' Viola De Gamba 4' Hohlflute
8' Viola Celeste 4’ Clarion
Tremulant 16' Contre Basse
  16' Bourdon
  16' Quintation
  16' Posaune
  16' Bassoon
Choir Pedal
8’Flute Harmonique 32’ Resultant
8’Dulciana 16’ Contre Basse
8’Unda Maris 16’Bourdon
4’Gemshorn 16’Quintation
4’Nachthorn 8’Octave
2 2/3’Nazard 8’Flute
2’Blockflute 4’Hohlflute
1 3/5 Tierce 16’Posaune
III Mixture 16’Bassoon
8’ De – Bois 8’Trumpet
Tremulant 8’Oboe


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