Burdett Organ Company
Unfortunately, this is just about all the information that’s survived the
passing of time on the Burdett Organ Co.
The company was located at 77-83 Sedgwick Street, Chicago, IL;
Riley Burdett, formerly Burditt, had been the head of J. Estey & Co.'s Chicago branch, Estey &
In the 1866 reorganization of the Estey company, Burdett and Silas M. Waite left and formed the
Burdett Organ Co. Ltd., the first of the Chicago reed organ builders.
Building organs for Lyon & Healy, and in 1867 formed the Brattleboro Melodeon Co., (qv). The
Chicago factory burned in the Chicago fire of 1871, started again at 12th and Walnut Streets in Erie, PA in
partnership with C.C. Converse 1872-1888.
They then moved to Freeport, IL in 1894. Built a three-story building on Manufacturers' Island
which was occupied until 1898 when the factory was moved to the Johnson Wheel Co. building in the Northwest part
of Freeport, where it had a capacity of 400 organs per month.
In 1901 the property and name were acquired by the Hobart M. Cable Co., and the piano scales were
acquired by the Edna Organ Co. In 1907 Cable sold the Burdett Organ Co. to S.N. Swan & Sons, (qv).
Serial number: 1871 - 17331, 1877 - 32267, 1898 - 58021, 1903 - 74297, 84806 - 1904.
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