Samples Memorial Organ

David Thomas at the console of the Samples Memorial Organ

David Thomas at the console of the Samples Memorial Organ

The Samples Memorial Organ was dedicated on Sunday, August 21, 2012 at a choral evensong service followed by a recital by Mr. Will Thomas, organist of Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Church in Alcoa, TN.

The organ was purchased and installed in memory of a St. Paul parishioner, Ronnie Samples, who passed away in 2011. The organ, a Rodgers specification 990, is one of the largest electronic organ installations in Sevier County.

Here is a description and stoplist for the new organ:

Since 1958, the Rodgers Organ Company has been acclaimed as the “Rolls Royce” of American built electronic organs. The Rodgers Heritage 990 (handcrafted in Hillsboro, Oregon) was Rodgers flagship model in the early eighties. With proper distribution of all tone families throughout the four organ divisions, the 990 organ readily lends itself to the performance of all organ literature from Baroque to Romantic. All four divisions are very complete, having the electronic equivalent of 57 ranks of pipes.

The “Great Division” (center manual) is the backbone and main substance of the organ. It is characterized by the unique Diapason sound, available at 6 separate pitch levels. This Diapason Chorus is backed up by a chorus of assertive flutes and crowned by a three-rank mixture. All stops from other divisions can be coupled to the Great division at 16’, 8’, or 4’ pitch. The Great division sounds from the 4 main speaker cabinets or 2 antiphonal (front) speaker cabinets.

The “Swell Division” (top manual) contains the more romantic imitative sounds. The Swell is named for its being an expressive division, having the capacity to “swell” in volume as the expression pedal is depressed. The Swell division of this organ is under independent expression and contains a complete Diapason chorus (voiced softer than those of the Great division), strings and flutes (along with a chorus of each), and many solo and chorus reeds. The Swell division sounds from either the main, antiphonal (front), or all speaker cabinets.

The “Choir Division” (bottom manual) possesses a lighter sound, and is named for the fact that this division most often accompanies the church choir in softer works. To this end, it has flutes and small scaled diapasons along with celestes for use in accompanying the solo voices of other divisions. The Choir also serves the additional function of a “positive” division, providing a boldly voiced 4’ Principal, 8’ Quintade, 8’ Schalmei and 4’ Quintadena necessary for performing music of the Baroque variety. The choir division sounds from the main (rear), antiphonal (front), or both sets of speaker cabinets.

The “Pedal Division”, consisting largely of flue stops, is the foundation on which the tonal mass of the organ rests. With its wide range of pitches and sounds, the pedal division is complete in itself, yet couplers are provided to bring manual sounds down to this division. The pedal division also contains several chorus reed stops to add the “snarl” and “fire” necessary for full organ registrations. The deepest tone (32’ Contra Violone) is found in this division, along with a complete complement of rich 16’ stops. For added expression flexibility, the 16’ and 8’ foundation chorus of the Swell division is extended to the pedal.

The hand-crafted solid wood console of the Rodgers 990 is in total compliance with AGO* standards and features three 61-note beveled and tilted wood core keyboards and a 32 note concave and radiating solid wood pedalboard. The console features lighted drawknobs, computer capture combination action, 14 toe studs, 16 divisional pistons, 6 general pistons, 9 position transposer, 2 balanced expression pedals, balanced crescendo pedal, sforzando piston, 22 divisional couplers, 5 intra-manual couplers, 3 reversible couplers, two octaves of bar chimes (sounding from either inside or belfry speakers), and note-by-note voicing capability.

Sound comes from 4 main speaker cabinets (each containing 10 speakers), two antiphonal speaker cabinets (each containing 10 speakers), one antiphonal bass cabinet,  two sets of Conn “pipe speakers” and a large main bass cabinet. There are five dual channel amplifiers and  digital sound processor’s with reverberation which provides a total output in excess of 2,250 watts of sound to over 73 speakers. Two horn speakers are installed high up in the belfry for the chimes.

  • American Guild of Organists



16’ Gemshorn

8’ Principal

8’ Bourdon

8’ Gemshorn

4’ Octave

4’ Spitzflöte

2 2/3’ Twelfth

2’ Super Octave

2’ Blockflöte

III Mixture

Great to Great 4’

Swell to Great 16’- 8’- 4’

Choir to Great 16’- 8’- 4’


16’ Violone

8’ Geigen Diapason

8’ Rohrflöte

8’ Salicional

8’ Voix Celeste

8’ Flute Celeste II

4’ Prestant

4’ Nachthorn

4’ Gemshorn

2’ Doublette

III Plein Jeu

16’ Fagotto

8’ Trompette

8’ Oboe

8’ Vox Humana

4’ Clarion

Swell Tremulant

Swell to Swell 16’- Unison Off – 4’


8’ Viola

8’ Viola Celeste

8’ Gedeckt

8’ Aeoline

8’ Unda Maris II

8’ Quintade

4’ Principal

4’ Koppelflöte

4’ Quintadena

2 2/3’ Nazard

2’ Flachflöte

1 3/5’ Tierce

1 1/3’ Nineteenth

1’ Sifflöte

8’ Krummhorn

8’ Schalmei


Chimes (struck bars in console)

Choir / Great Tremulant

Choir to Choir 16’- Unison Off – 4’

Swell to Choir 16’- 8’- 4’


32’ Contra Violone

16’ Principal

16’ Bourdon

16’ Violone (SW)

16’ Lieblich Gedeckt

8’ Octave

8’ Flute

8’ Gemshorn (SW)

4’ Choralbass

II Mixture

16’ Bombarde (independent)

8’ Trompette (SW)

4’ Clarion (SW)

Great to Pedal 8’ – 4’

Swell to Pedal 8’ – 4’

Choir to Pedal 8’ – 4’

4 Swell pistons

4 Great pistons

4 Choir pistons

4 Pedal pistons (duplicated by toe studs)

6 General pistons (duplicated by toe studs)

1 General Cancel piston

1 SET piston

Transposer, nine pistons

Swell Main Off

Swell Antiphonal On

Great/Choir Main Off

Great/Choir Antiphonal On

Swell to Great reversible (piston and toe stud)

Swell to Pedal reversible (piston and toe stud)

Great to Pedal reversible (piston and toe stud)

Reversible Sforzando (piston and toe stud)

Balanced Crescendo Pedal with indicator lights

Balanced Swell Expression with indicator lights

Balanced General Expression with indicator lights

Tower Carillon

Combination Action Lock