Founded in 1873 by A.J. Tschantz
The Schantz Organ Company, founded in 1873 by A.J. Tschantz, (later changed to Schantz) is the largest and oldest American pipe organ builder still under management of the founding family. Combining his inventive skills with a love of music, Tschantz began building pipe organs after a brief venture into the construction of reed (parlor) organs.
In the early part of the twentieth century, A.J.'s sons joined him in his organ building shop. Under their leadership, the growing company developed a strong reputation as a regional builder. (Most of the early instruments were modest in size and found within two-hundred miles of the Orrville workshop.) In turn, their sons learned the skills of the trade and took over the operation of the company. It was under the leadership of the third generation (following World War II) that the company developed its national reputation.
Today work continues under the management of the fourth generation of the Schantz family. Commissions for the firm include projects ranging in scope from restoration of existing instruments to the construction of entirely new pipe organs, and in size from modest organs of a few ranks of pipes, to complex designs for some of the largest churches, cathedrals, and public spaces in the world.
The Schantz Organ Company is, in reality, a number of workshops housed under the same roof. Component parts of the pipe organ are constructed in various departments and are then assembled in our three-story assembly room.
Located on the same site since 1901, our facilities have grown to match our need for space as the firm has grown. Numerous additions have been made to the original 1901 structure. The most recent, a three-story assembly room was completed in 1993. Nearly every component part of a Schantz organ is built and tested in our workshop on the corner of Oak and Walnut Streets.
Old world craftsmanship combines with modern techniques under one roof to produce instruments that, like our shop, are one of a kind.
Building instruments of the utmost quality requires a highly trained, talented, and dedicated staff.
Over the decades, craft skills have been passed from generation to generation of artisans who make up the team at The Schantz Organ Company.
Expert craftsmen and craftswomen employ a wide variety of skills such as metalworking for organ pipe construction, and woodworking for windchest, case, and console construction. Modern technologies in the completed instrument, including solid-state electronics for switching and software-based control systems, are utilized for increased flexibility and ease of use by the organist. In construction, computer aided design and computer driven cutting tools are employed in the fabrication of Schantz organs. These resources are utilized, where practical, for efficient and accurate production.
By developing skills over the course of their careers, each member of our staff brings the highest level of quality to their work, thereby helping to ensure the construction of instruments of distinction.