Tabernacle Organists Through the Years

“Tabernacle Organists Through the Years,” Ensign, Apr. 1974, 75

Tabernacle Organists Through the Years

Over the years there have been two Tabernacles in Salt Lake City. The first was built in 1852 and torn down in 1877. The existing structure was built during the years 1863–67. Joseph H. Ridges installed the organ, brought from Australia, in the first building, and then built the original organ for the second building.

Those who served as organists in the first Tabernacle were:

Dr. Karl G. Maeser, the first president of Brigham Young Academy.

Fanny Young Thatcher, daughter of President Brigham Young.

Sarah A. Cooke

Orson Pratt, Jr.

John H. Chamberlain

Henry E. Giles

Organists called to serve in the existing Tabernacle were:

Joseph J. Daynes, organist from 1867 until October 1, 1900.

Katherine Romney (Stewart), mother of Isaac Stewart, now president of the Tabernacle Choir. Sister Stewart served as assistant organist prior to 1900.

John J. McClellan, senior organist from October 1, 1900, until his death in 1925.

Tracy Young Cannon, organist from 1905 to 1930.

Edward Partridge Kimball, who became senior organist at the death of Brother McClellan. He served from 1905 until his death in 1937.

Walter J. Poulton, assistant organist from 1907 to 1908.

Moroni B. Gillespie, assistant organist from April to September of 1911.

Alexander Schreiner, appointed organist in 1924, senior organist in 1937 at the death of Brother Kimball, and chief organist in 1965.

Frank W. Asper, appointed organist in 1924; named organist emeritus when he retired in 1965.

Wade N. Stephens, appointed organist in 1933; retired in 1944.

Roy M. Darley, appointed organist April 11, 1947.

Robert Cundick, appointed organist April 6, 1965.