Organs & Organist

The organs in the Dayton area are nearly as diverse as the organist that play them.  The organs range from large multi-divison, modern pipe organs to small rural pipe organs orgininally pumped by hand.

The ranks of the Dayton AGO Chapter organists include organ professors, full-time musicians, and choirmasters,  but also includes many part-time musicans who are also teachers, students, office workers, singers, music directors and pastors, professors, lawyers and engineers.

What this diverse group of musicians have in common is a love of the organ and its literature, a desire to enjoy, support and teach each other, and a calling to serve the church and the community thru music. 

The following profiles demonstrate this diversity of both organ and organist in the Dayton Area.  To add your profiles, email descriptions (including  StopList) and photographs of the organ and organist to

Shiloh Church
Möller Pipe Organ

Shiloh Organ 



The Shiloh Church boasts a 4 manual Möller pipe organ with  55 stops in the chancel organ and 8 additional in an antiphonal organ.  The organ, Opus 11371 was built in1971.


Shiloh Church, United Church of Christ
5300 Philadelphia Dr.
(Main & Philadelphia)

Dayton, OH  45415



Senior Organist

Shiloh Stops

Shiloh Antiphonal Organ

The Rev. Aaron M. Sheaffer is Senior Organist of Shiloh Church. A native of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, he is a graduate of Lebanon Valley College, Annville, Pennsylvania, and United Theological Seminary of Dayton. An ordained United Methodist minister, he is retired (technically!) from the active ministry. He became Shiloh’s Senior Organist in 1985 and from 1991 through 2003 also served as Shiloh’s Pastor of Arts and Outreach. During thirty years (1960-1990) on the staff and faculty of United Theological Seminary he served as Director of The United Sound, the school’s prestigious choral/dramatic ensemble which toured throughout the United States and to Europe. As Associate Professor of Communication Arts and Music he developed the communications center/television studio at the seminary and began the communications studies program. For a number of years he hosted television programs produced by the seminary for broadcast and cable television. He was a founding member of Dayton Access Television (DATV) and served on its Board of Trustees for 27 years. Aaron is a Past President of the Fellowship of United Methodists in Music and Worship Arts and a former Chair of the North American Broadcast Section of the World Association for Christian Communication. Hobbies include electronics of all kinds, photography, and—of course—music. The real power behind his enthusiasm for life is his wife, Pat, their four children, their grandchildren, and  Shiloh’s Möller pipe organ.

Clifton United Presbyterian Church
Estey Pipe Organ

Estey Organ 



The two manual Clifton United Presbyterian Pipe Organ was built by the Estey Organ Company, of Brattleboro, Vermont.  The organ, Estey Opus Number 1589, was built in 1917 for what was then the Clifton Presbyterian Church.  Estey built a wide range of organs ranging from multi-divison organs with nearly a hundred ranks to many like ours with only 9 stops/ranks of pipes. 


Clifton United Presbyterian Church,

  183 N. Jackson St., 
  Clifton, OH 45316




Dr. Matthew P. Dierking is organist at Clifton United Presbyterian Church.  He is a part-time musician with a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering.  He is a laser radar researcher and an adjunct Professor of Electro-Optics at the University of Dayton.  


He has served as organist at several Dayton area churches.  At Clifton United Presbyterian Church he is privileged to lead a small volunteer worship orchestra at Clifton consisting of church members ranging in age from 14 to 65. The six or seven regular musicians play violin, trumpet, saxophone and french horn and are joined on special occasions by other members adding clarinet, flute, pedal harp, tenor saxophone and classical guitar.





Dayton Art Institute
Ernest M. Skinner, 1930

DAI Console
 The Organ

The DAI Organ, Opus 749, was built by the Skinner Organ Company in 1929.  It was built during an era when art museums regarded pipe organs as a natural addition to the arts. Skinner built many organs for museums including Opus 333 for Cleveland’s Museum of Art, and Opus 758 for the Brooklyn Art Museum as well as home organs such as those in the Kettering and Deeds Mansions here in Dayton -- and Opus 786, a 9 rank organ for the Deeds’ yacht[1],[2].

The two manual DAI organ has 35 stops controlling 21 ranks with 1,418 pipes.  The manuals address the same stops, but the pipes are divided into two expression chambers. Although not designed as a solo instrument, it does have some beautiful voices.   The acoustics in the auditorium are also quite good and enhance the voices of the organ.

[1] A. Thompson-Allen Organ Company,
[2] The Dayton Art Institute Organ, 25 April, 1990





DAI Auditorium
1990 DAI Organ History is a short writeup from the DAI about the organ

2003 Faber Dediction Announcement:  The advertisement and Wittenberg University writeup describing Prof. Trudy Faber's rededication of the DAI Skinner organ in 2003.

1930 DAI Opening Article

1930 DAI Organ Dedication Article

Deeds Organs describes the organs in the Deeds residenece and on board his yacht.  Both are Skinner organs similar to the DAI organ.
St. Paul Evangelical
Lutheran Church


St. Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church
239 Wayne Ave.
Dayton, OH 45402












 Organist Terry Donat
First English Evangelical
Lutheran Church

First English Evangelical Lutheran Church
138 West First Street,
Dayton, Ohio  45402-1101
Phone:  937-222-7848          
Fax:  937-222-7849
   Ellen Bagley
Westminster Pipework
Westminster Console

Westminster Presbyterian Church Casavant Organ

The Casavant Organ (opus 2670), dedicated in January 1963, blends the grand sounds of the classic organ with the orchestral color of the romantic type.  The organ is really two organs: a Chancel Organ located at the front of the Sanctuary and a Gallery-Celestial Organ located in the balcony. Each has its own console. Together these organs have over 7,000 pipes arranged in 122 ranks. Every pipe, including those visible from the pews, is a speaking pipe.




125 N. Wilkinson Street,
Dayton, OH 45402





















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