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Historical Society tour held

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A group from the Douglas County Historical Society of Alexandria and their bus driver toured the 15 display rooms at the Wadena County Historical Society Museum and Genealogy Research Center. They said they were very impressed with the displays and wondered how the historical society could make everything look like it was just pressed and so clean. They were the first group to view the 1876 pump organ. The organ was made for the Centennial Exposition in 1876 in Philadelphia and eventually made its way to Staples. There were only two of these pump organs made. The 1876 pump organ graces the lobby at the Wadena County Historical Society Museum.

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From Lois Springer's "The Collector's Book of Bells," page 137: "A set of tuned bells that undoubtedly accompanied a great deal of hymn singing was patented March 2, 1875, by Schoninger of New Haven, Connecticut, expressly for the Cymbella organ manufactured by his company. The distinctive feature of this organ, and the one from which it derived its trade name, was the upper register stop called a Cymbella. This stop controlled the built shaped bells neatly nested on a metal rod. The first Cymbella organ was completed especially for the Centennial of 1867, and was played for the first time on July 4. With so much planning and patriotic sentiment involved in manufacturing his organ, surely Mr. Schoninger could not have foreseen the day when

collectors would be lifting out and salvaging the bells that formed such an integral part of his invention."

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