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Christ Church Cranbrook Carillon Records

 Collection
Identifier: 1998-08

Collection Scope

Christ Church Cranbrook Carillon (1998-08) is a gathering of files and photographs from the office of Carilloneur Beverly Buchanan during her years at the church. Beverly acted as Carillonneur at Christ Church from 1964 until 1988, where she performed weekly recitals and concerts, and also provided lessons to students.

SERIES I: Maintenance Files (1950-1989) contains correspondence and invoices on the preservation and general upkeep of the carillon and its tower.

SERIES II: Correspondence (1969-1985) holds general correspondence to and from Beverly Buchanan and with those whom she associated at Christ Church, at Cranbrook, and colleagues in her field.

SERIES III: Recitals (1928-1991) contains a year-by-year arrangement of recital programs and brochures for those taking place at Christ Church.

SERIES IV: Photographs (1978-1986) consists of photocopies of album pages with images of the Christ Church carillon, various carillon-related events, and other American and European carillons, all taken or collected by Beverly Buchanan. Photocopies have been kept for purposes of identification and retention of original typed captions.

Dates

  • 1928 - 1991

Creator

Access

Access to the collection is unrestricted.

Use

Permission to use collection materials must be requested in writing.

History

Jervis McMechan, in Christ Church Cranbrook: A History of the Parish to Commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the Consecration of the Church, 1928-1978, explains that a carillon,

“...is a set of bells, tuned to the notes of a chromatic scale, on which music may be played in two or more parts. The bells of a carillon are stationary; only the clapper moves, when actuated by an intricate system of wires connected to a keyborad, called a “claviar,” with pedals and manuals similar to an organ. At Christ Church the clavier is in a room in the tower below the bells. There the carilloneur plays by striking the keys with closed fists and applying pressure with his feet on the foot pedals.” (p. 60).

Installed in 1927, the original Christ Church carillon was a gift from local resident Harold L. Wallace and his family. He paid the John Taylor & Sons Foundry in Loughborough, England nearly $28,000 to cast and then deliver the bells to the newly constructed Christ Church. Wallace worked closely with the foundry and the architect of the church, Bertram Grosvenor Goodhue Associates, in determining the physical space requirements and the number of octaves and bells to be employed.

World-renowned carilloneur Anton Brees of Antwerp played the carillon at its Christ Church dedication on September 30, 1928. Brees became the carillonneur for Mercersburg Academy in Pennsylvania and later the Bok Tower in Lake Wales, Florida. Through the assistance of the Wallace family, Brees returned to Cranbrook every summer until 1941, playing concerts on Wednesdays and Sundays to crowds that averaged in size of 1500 and 4500, respectively.

George and Ellen Booth’s personal nurse, Nellie Beveridge, was the church’s official carillonneur in the 1940’s. Beverly Buchanan played the bells at Cranbrook from 1964 until 1988, when she moved to Nashville, Tennessee to become the carilloneur at Belmont College, and later at Carillon Beach in Panama City, Florida. In addition to regular carillonneurs, Christ Church has had many guest and visiting carillonneurs, and has often shared carillonneurs with other area towers, including Kirk-in-the-Hills Presbyterian Church in Bloomfield Hills and the Burton Memorial Tower at The University of Michigan.

Originally installed with forty-six bells, two more were added in 1929 to give the carillon four chromatic octaves. In 1975, the family of Grace Booth Wallace provided funds for the recasting of thirty-five of the top-range bells by improved methods. The new bells were installed in Christ Church in May 1978 and a recital on October 8, 1978 celebrated the recast bells and the 50th anniversary of the dedication of the original carillon.

Extent

2.1 Linear Feet (5 MS)

Language of Materials

English

Abstract

Installed in 1927, the original Christ Church carillon was a gift from local resident Harold L. Wallace and his family. Wallace worked closely with the foundry and the architect of the church, Bertram Grosvenor Goodhue Associates, in determining the physical space requirements and the number of octaves and bells to be employed. World-renowned carilloneur Anton Brees of Antwerp played the carillon at its Christ Church dedication on September 30, 1928 and he returned to Cranbrook every summer until 1941, playing concerts on Wednesdays and Sundays to crowds that averaged in size of 1500 and 4500, respectively. George and Ellen Booth’s personal nurse, Nellie Beveridge, was the church’s official carillonneur in the 1940’s. In addition to regular carillonneurs, Christ Church has had many guest and visiting carillonneurs, and has often shared carillonneurs with other area towers, including Kirk-in-the-Hills Presbyterian Church in Bloomfield Hills and the Burton Memorial Tower at The University of Michigan. Originally installed with forty-six bells, two more were added in 1929 to give the carillon four chromatic octaves. This collection includes maintenance files (1950-1989), correspondence from the late 1970s and 1980s, recitals covering 1928-1991, and photographs from 1978-1986.

Arrangement

The collection consists of four series: Maintenance Files (box 1), Correspondence (box 2), Recitals (boxes 2-5), and Photographs (box 5). There are also recitals and publications (box 6).

Series I: Maintenance Files are arranged alphabetically by folder and then chronologically within each folder.

Acquisition

Gift of Beverly Buchanan, Christ Church Cranbrook Carilloneur, in 1991.

Related Materials

Christ Church Cranbrook Records (1992-01)

George Gough Booth Papers (1981-01)

Henry Scripps Booth and Carolyn Farr Booth Papers (1982-05)

Transfers

Photographs in Series IV were removed were removed from their original albums and transferred to the Photograph Special Files. se photographs and placed into the Photograph Special File,

Processing History

Ryan Wieber, 1998.
Title
Guide to the Christ Church Cranbrook Carillon Records
Status
Completed
Author
Ryan Wieber
Date
1998
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin
Edition statement
Resource record created by Laura MacNewman.

Repository Details

Part of the Cranbrook Archives, Cranbrook Center for Collections and Research Repository

Contact:
39221 Woodward Ave.
P.O. Box 801
Bloomfield Hills MI 48303 US