First Presbyterian has a long tradition of worshiping God through fine music.  From preludes and postlude, to the prayers and praise of Hymns and Choral Anthems, to the joyful sound of the Hand bell choir, our music glorifies God and is a focal point for many in the worship experience.

The church has a Moller Pipe Organ which was installed in the balcony in the mid 1960s.  In 2011 the console was moved back to the front of the sanctuary.  This allows the choir director and choir to join the congregation in the nave of the Church.

The Adult Choir boasts about 22 voices singing from many genres of music.  This group is open to anyone from High School on up and always welcomes new members.  They sings from September through mid June and gather for rehearsals from 6:30-7:30 on Thursdays.  

The Hand Bell Choir is another exciting, though sometimes humbling, experience.  The Hand Bell Choir rings at least 4 times a years and gathers for rehearsals on Thursdays from 5:30-6:30.  This group is always looking for new folks, no experience necessary they will help you as you go!  Some folks may only ring a few bells while others can ring 4 all at once time! 

It is fair to say that the Hand Bell and Adult Choirs make up a truly joy filled group that knows how to celebrate the life God has given.  They have a lot of fun and enhance the worship experience through their amazing music and joy in living.

It is our hope and dream that one day soon we will have a children and youth “choir chime” choir, we purchased 2 octaves of choir chimes in the winter of 2011.




Pipe Organ History At First Presbyterian

Ogdensburg, NY

The first stone building of the Presbyterian Church was built in 1824-1825, by 1828 the church had its first pipe organ.

The second  pipe organ was installed in 1867 as a result of the 1866 second rebuilding of the church.  This instrument had 2 manuals, 25 stops, 1300 pipes, installed in the rear of the sanctuary overlooking the balcony. 

            The Pipe Organ was moved to the front of the sanctuary in 1887 when the sanctuary was redecorated.  At that time it was in the front right corner.   In 1898 the instrument was revoiced  

            In 1917 the organ was rebuilt by Mr. Viner at the cost of $5000.  Changed from a tracker action organ to a electro-pneumatic action with the addition of pipes making the new total 1431.

            By 1958 a committee was formed to look at what do to with the organ in serious need of re-building.  The 5 top organ builders looked at each advised that it would cost more to re-build than to put in an entire new one.   It was recommended by the organ committee that the church move forward with ordering and purchasing and new pipe organ, quickly since, at that time with the backlog, it would be a project that would take about 3 years to complete.  The building itself in the church would only be 2 weeks. 

At a meeting of joint Boards of the church (Trustees, Deacons and Session) on May 7, 1958 “It was moved, duly seconded and unanimously carried, to submit to the congregation the report of the Organ Committee and its recommendations to purchase a new organ for not to exceed $29730, plus new grille and casement work in the amount of approximately $5000. 


            There seems to be a bit of a gap in the paper worship in the organ file here.  January 21, 1960 there is a letter from the M.P. Moller Pipe Organ Architects and Builders along with some blue prints of the new organ, indicating the structural work that will need to be done to the building to hold the weight of the new Pipe Organ.  The letter ends with stating that the shipping date for the new organ was the week of February 1.  It seems that the organ was placed in the Balcony at that time.

            Early in 2002 the Pipe Organ was rebuilt by Kerner and Merchant Pipe Organ Builders.  During that rebuild, the switching/combination system was replaced with a computerized system.  The company also releathered 5 reservoir bellows, rebuilt the  pneumatic expression motors, and rebuilt chime striker action and tremolo.  The Pipe organ was rededicated to the service and Glory of God on November 8, 2002 with Will Headlee of Syracuse playing a rededicatory recital. 

            Early in 2011, with the all of the new technology in fiber optics, the church saw the need to bring the organ consol back to the front of the sanctuary to help prevent the need for the choir to climb the steep spiral staircase to the balcony.  Since the instrument had already been computerized in 2002, this was not a difficult nor cost prohibitive move.  The Consol is now nested within the choir riser in the front right corner of the Sanctuary but has the ability to be rolled to the center of the front of the sanctuary in the event of a recital.  This work was done again by Kerner and Merchant Pipe Organ Builders and they continue to maintain the church’s now 53 year old Pipe Organ today.  

            The M.P. Moller Organ has three manuals, in addition to the pedals.  There are 4 divisions, 32 stops, 19 registers, and boast 24 ranks of pipes.  The manual compass is 61 notes, the pedal is 32 notes.  To see a full stop list go to:


            Choral (about the choir)


            Hand Bell (about Hand Bells)


            Children’s Hand Chime Choir