This year marks the 150th anniversary of the Salt Lake Tabernacle organ. The then-newly constructed pipe organ made its debut in October 1867 during the first general conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints held in the Salt Lake Tabernacle. In the 150 years that have followed, the Tabernacle organ has served as the iconic backdrop for meetings and events broadcast throughout the world. The image of the Tabernacle organ itself has become widely known as a symbol of the Church and of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.
At that first 1867 meeting in the Tabernacle, Church president Brigham Young announced from the pulpit, “We have commenced [an organ] that I think will do credit to the wilderness we inhabit.” Prior to the industrial revolution, organs were considered one of the most complicated man-made creations. Brigham Young asked 35-year-old Joseph Harris Ridges, who had built only one other organ while living in Australia, to build the organ for the Salt Lake Tabernacle.View Full Story