Herz-Jesu – Luxemburg – Stadt

This monumental instrument, made by the manufacture d´orgues luxembourgeoise G. Haupt in 1938, is a caseless organ which is integrated into an 8m by 8m hole in the rear wall of the gallery. The entire instrument, consisting of pipes, wind chests, and bellows, ranges throughout the spacious organ chamber behind its façade.

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The front row of the façade is made up by the voices principal 16’, beginning at C (both 6 pipes to the left and right), principal 4’ (miter-shaped pipe formation in the middle) and principal 8’ and the octave bass 8’ (the pipes in between). In the back formation of pipes, also in the shape of a miter, are the deepest notes of principal bass 16’, beginning at C.

Behind the façade are the arrangement of pipes for the great organ and the pedal in the middle, and the arrangements for the other two pieces in their own respective swell boxes on the left and right sides. The larger of the two swell divisions, which stretches out over two floors and has 50 shutters, had an unsatisfactory swelling effect for a long time both because the shutters were not sealing well, and because the electro-pneumatic swell euquil was not powerful enough to move such a large number of parts.

In the course of the improvement of the swelling effects in 2005, which included the removal of all the shutters, we discovered an interesting detail which documents the close connection between the workshops Haupt/Lintgen and Stahlhut/Aachen. As is well known, the Haupt Company emerged out of the Organ Builder’s Workshop Stahlhut.

Back to the shutters. Having been constructed from Douglasie (Oregon-Pine) with a thickness of 4 cm, they consist of 3-4 cm wide, continuous, glued discs. The lower axle’s pin stands upon a plate of glass in order to prevent its sinking into the wood.

Both the shutter construction, not from a single piece of wood, which would also have been possible, but from thin strips, and the axle’s pins’ placement on glass are a practice dating back to Stahlhut.

Here is a quote from the 1911 estimate for the Stahlhut organ of Düdeling, taken from the book of the same name from 2002, under “Swelling Boxes and Casing”, page 326 of the German edition:

‘Walls and lids double-walled, 5 cm thick, shutters 4 cm, the latter for the prevention of wear and tear, cut into thin strips and re-glued in mixed order, running on glass plates, including the console mechanisms.’

This makes clear how a tried and true method is conserved and passed on within the workshop for years and decades, true to the motto ‘This is the way we’ve always done it’.

It was not until the 1950s that the Haupt workshop would change the shutters. The new materials in use are fiber boards. The practice of placing the axles on glass plates remains, however.