Dr. Peggy Edwards, Dean: (660) 446-2003

The American Guild of Organists fosters the appreciation and enjoyment of organ and choral music through recitals and workshops.


 "In 1838, a wandering Jesuit priest visited the obscure and lonely trading post at Blacksnake Hills (incorporated as Saint Joseph in 1843).  Here, in a rude log house of Joseph Robidoux (the city's founder), a primitive altar was extemporized from a common table, and, in the presence of the wondering red man and the scarcely more cultivated pioneer, Mass was celebrated.  This was the small beginning of the march of Christianity in our midst."  (Chris Rutt's "History of Buchanan County. . .", 1904)

 A parish was established with 20 families in 1845, and the first Catholic Church in Saint Joseph was a brick building at Fifth and Felix Streets, completed in 1847.  In 1868, the Diocese of Saint Joseph was organized.  In 1869, construction began on the present Italian Renaissance style Cathedral, which was partially underwritten with missionary funds from Austria.  Completed in 1871, the Cathedral, designed by local architects Meagher & Eckel,  holds the distinction of being the oldest church building in continuous use in the city.  The nave measures 88' x 166.'

 The original organ was an 1882 Odenbrett & Abler, 2 manuals and 25 stops, tracker action.  It was replaced by the present organ, built by George Kilgen & Son as Opus 4338, 3 manuals and 19 ranks, installed behind the old case pipes in 1928.  The Choir division stops were duplexed into the Great division, which shared the same enclosure.

 This organ was revised by M. P. Moller in 1949, at which time the reeds were replaced and stops were added at 4' and 2' pitch.  In 1974, the Bedient Organ Co. added 13 ranks, including a 4 rank mixture.

 In 1982, Temple Organ Co. replaced the original Kilgen console and relays, reducing the organ to 2 manuals.  A two rank mixture was added to the Swell.  The revised organ has 24 ranks. 


Gallery Pipe Organ Installation


Post Card view from early 1900s


View of interior circa 1914


A view from the late 60's - Post Vatican II era



A view to the front of the church after the 1995 renovation






Opus 4338, 1928        

Rebuilt by M. P. Moller Co., Hagerstown, MD, 1949,

            Bedient Organ Co., Lincoln, NE, 1974

            Temple Organ Co., Saint Joseph, MO, 1982

II/24  Ventil chests with electro-pneumatic action

For full information on what these stops mean, click HERE


16' Principal

 8' Principal

 8' English Principal

 8' Rohrflote

 8' Dulciana

 4' Octave

 4' Koppelflote

 4' Dulcet

 2 2/3' Nazard

 2' Super Octave

 2' Piccolo

 1 3/5' Tierce TC

 1 1/3' Mixture IV

 8' Clarinet



 8' Gedeckt

 8' Gemshorn

 8' Gemshorn Celeste TC

 4' Principal

 4' Triangular Flute

 4' Stillflote

 2' Flautino

     Mixture II

16' Fagotto

 8' Trompette

 8' Oboe

 4' Clarion



32' Resultant

16' Open Diapason

16' Principal (Gt)

16' Subbass

 8' Octave (Gt)

 8' Bass Flute

 4' Octave (Gt)

     Mixture IV (Gt)

16' Contra Fagotto (Sw)

 8' Trompette (Sw)

 4' Clarion (Sw)

 4' Clarinet (Gt)  



Information provided by David Lewis


Updated February 18, 2010 .  2000 Allied Arts Council of St. Joseph, Inc.  Funding for this site has been provided by the Missouri Arts Council.