Heard in the TV series "HOUSE" and "911"

The "Big Bertha" Carousel Fair Organ captures the adulation of audiences everywhere she was exhibited. One of three organs

 that were on a beautiful old  Looff Carousel in Ramona Park, Grand Rapids, Michigan, from 1910 to 1955. She was put in storage

 until moved to Gulf Shores, Alabama.  Big Bertha is a Limonaire Organ having been made in France in the late 1800's. She was

purchased by Paul Eakins in 1963, and over 2500  man-hours were spent in completely redoing the organ from August 1963 to

 June 1966. During 1978, the fifth change in the method of programming was made for Big Bertha. Big Bertha was showcased a

 the  Gay 90's Village in Sikeston, Missouri,  and the Gay 90's Melody Museum in St. Louis, Missouri. The organ also traveled the

 country to various State Fairs and Expositions up until  Paul Eakins retired in 1978. He then sold Big Bertha and most of his

collection to Disney World in Orlando, Florida.  First, she was a Barrel Organ, playing from a 90 key pinned cylinder. Second,

she was changed to play from perforated cardboard books of music. Third, in 1913, was converted to play from  North Tonawanda

 endless rolls. Fourth, changed to play  from 82 key Artizan rolls. Fifth, now plays from #165 Wurlitzer Military Band Organ rolls.

  Big Bertha plays 369 pipes, a bass drum, a snare drum, two bells, tympani, double castanets, cymbals, a triangle, and a set of 18

bells. The very ingenious snare  drum action stems back to the great Leonardo Da Vinci who designed this type of arrangement.

 The triangle perforations now activate the two comely bell-ringers. The Director, Big Bertha, is in time with the bass drum. The

 piccolos now play intermittently with the trumpets. When the piccolos are playing, the bell-ringers play in unison with the bass

drum. The director holds the baton with her right hand, and when she turns her head to the left, directs in time with the bass

 drum; when she looks straight ahead  again, she raises her left hand.  She is flanked on either side by a bell-ringer. The three

 figures  are beautifully proportioned and resemble real people. Hand carved, the embellishments are colorful and elaborate.

On the top grille is an unusual figure-head resembling Columbus. Two charming cherubs with carved gossamer drapings also

adorn the grille. At the lower center of the facade is a very savage-looking gargoyle.  These are all fine examples of the highly

 specialized art of wood-carving. Big Bertha is truly a work of art and her music is very exhilarating, bringing back the nostalgia of

 bygone days. Sit back and enjoy Big Bertha at her best.

1. Royal Trumpeters

 2. Vienna Blood

3. Santiago Verse

4. Ben Hur Chariot Race

5. Liberty Bell

6. Espanita

7. Sharpshooters

8. On The Beautiful Danube

9. Our Director

10. Loves Dream After The Ball

11. The Thunderer

12. One Thousand and One Nights

13. Fairest of the Fair

14. La Gatina

15. Storm King

16. Spirit of Love

17. Dream of Heaven

18. American Patrol

19. Battle Hymn of the Republic

20. Officer of the Day

21. Stars and Stripes Forever




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