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St. Paul’s Pipe Organ History

Historical account researched by Roy N. Cramer and published with permission in the “St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church of Dillsburg History of 150 years of ministry”  (1855-2004)  from the Northern York County Historical and Preservation Society, Inc., publishers of History of Dillsburg, PA 1901-1950. From Hitching Post to Drive-In Theater by Robert F. Gayman 2001.

“In the early stages of World War II, some time in 1941, the Moeller [sic] Organ Company of Hagerstown, Maryland built a pipe organ for a small European church and took it to the docks in New York City with the intention of shipping it to their customer abroad. It was a difficult and risky business at this time to ship overseas because of the Lend Lease program with England and France, so the pipe organ sat on the docks in New York City.

G. Kenneth Cocklin, a Dillsburg merchant and undertaker, had a friend who knew about the dilemma of this pipe organ sitting on the docks, unable to be shipped. He asked Ken if the congregation of St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church of Dillsburg might be interested in purchasing the organ, as the church was in the process of remodeling and redecorating at this time. Ken presented the offer to the Church Council at St. Paul’s, and after some deliberation, they decided to buy it.

The pipe organ was shipped to Dillsburg from New York City. It really fit in nicely with the newly remodeled church as the console had a chestnut wood cabinet, which matched the wood trim of the sanctuary. The Moeller [sic] Organ Company installed the instrument and it remains a good pipe organ to this day.