Barrel Organs

Portable organ (barrel organ)

    Portable organ (barrel organ)

    Russian Empire


    I.Nechada organs and orchestrions factory

    Wood, metal, brass, steel, leather, glass; casting, woodwork, lathing, marquetry, painting

    58 x 60 x 38 cm

    On the case front side: “НЕЧАДА Балковская № 191 ОДЕССА”. On the keyframe: “1222”, on the top panel: "КАХЕТ. ВИНО."


    Barrel organ in rectangular wooden veneered case on the pedestal with curved corner feet, reinforced with brass onlays on the side ribs. All case sides and the pedestal are decorated with the images of cherubs with music instruments, genre scenes in the composed frames, foliate ornament in the marquetry technique and coloured glass onlays. The face with metal brackets on the side ribs is closed with a removable panel with ornament and four windows. Painted images of dancers with ribbons are in the side windows. Daisies over green background are in the horizontal one. Thirteen metal piccolo pipes with black plugs ornated with red ribbon are in the open window. The inscription is below “НЕЧАДА Балковская No 191 ОДЕССА”. Two staples, a carrying strap, image of a vine with bunches of grapes and four wine bottles with an inscription “КАХЕТ. ВИНО” in the triple composed frame.
    With the keyframe raised, the barrel can be moved along the axis and set to one of eight fixed positions according to the selected melody. An image of a girl with two lambs in front of the gate and a metal crank with wooden handle are on the case rear side.
    As the crank is moved, the worm gear rotates the barrel and drives the bellows that inject air into the wind chest with valves. Pins and bridges on the lift the keys that open the valves of the corresponding pipes. The air from the wind chest enters the pipes and make them sound. Music media: pinned barrel.