the small organ of Freiberg Cathedral
built by Gottfried silbermann, 1719
restored (Partly) by JehmlicH 1997
In 1717 Gottfried Silbermann finished building his organ in Freiberg’s St. Jakobi church. It was his second instrument that he built in Freiberg. In 1718 the council of Freiberg commissioned another organ with one manual for the St. Johns church. Being a “Hospitalkirche” (hospital church) it was situated outside the city center. In July 1719 this organ was inaugurated. Silbermann had built a trumpet bass 8’ which was an additional work that was not part of the contract. This instrument has 14 stops, 3 of them in the pedal. The trumpet bass was built in the same way as the trombone bass which is unusual for organs with resonators made of wood. In 1857 Karl Traugott Stöckel, an organ builder from Dippoldiswalde, repaired the instrument. He built in a pedal coupler and tuned the instrument in an equal tuning.
In the 1930ies St. John’s was in such a ruinous condition that it was feared it would collapse. Following a proposal of the cantor Arthur Eger the organ was removed by the company Hermann Eule from Bautzen. It was mounted on the northern jube gallery of the Cathedral. The organ was also modified: By changes and adding the notes C and D and new keys for C# it reached the pitch it has today (a’=438 Hz).
On February, 1 1939 it was inaugurated in the Cathedral. 1997 the company “Jehmlich Orgelbau” did a partial restoration. The pitch and the tuning were kept. St. John’s is today parish church of the Catholic congregation John the Baptist in Freiberg.
Freiberg Cathedral, small Organ
Gottfried Silbermann, 1719
C – c3
Qvinta 1 1/3
C – c1
coupler I/P (not original)
Pitch: a1=439,5 Hz
(originally 460–466 Hz)