200 Days in the Life of the College

Tuesday, October 19

Reaching for a high note

The Chapel organ is cleaned and maintained by Ben Merchant of Kerner and Merchant Pipe Organ Builders, Ltd., of Syracuse. The two-keyboard Noack was designed specifically for the Chapel, built in 1975 and presented to the College by Trustee Lee H. Bristol, Jr. ’45 in memory of Berrian R. Shute, who established Hamilton’s Music Department in 1926. “The instrument was of highest quality, and maintenance has been minimal,” but the College has been encouraged to do some restoration work, says Stephen Best, the College’s instructor of keyboard harmony and coordinator of individual performance instruction. “The pipes are 90 percent tin,” Best adds, “which accounts for their shiny — albeit badly fingerprinted — appearance.”