First Congregational Church in Woburn

Do you like to sing? Come and join our choir, we would love to have you!

Special pieces created for our music programs have been written by the classical composer, Karl Henning, and by the folk guitarist, William Foley.

The Concert "In Honor of the life of William Goodwin" was a huge success.
photo by David Demambro
photos by David Demambro
Quintessential Brass
William Goodwin, former Organist and Choir Master
The organ  was built (Opus 283) by E.G. & G. Hook of Boston, and installed in the 6th meeting house  just after we moved out of the 5th meeting house (which today is the Hindu Ashram across the center) and dedicated October 31, 1860.

In 1913 tonal alterations of this 3 manual organ were restored to the original 1860 tonal configuration. The pedal board had been restored in the early 70's by the George Bozeman Organ Company of New Hampshire. In 1993, the  Bozeman Co. was contracted to replace the 1860 leather on the large reservoir bellows.  At the beginning of this century, the church authorized removal, restoration, and reinstallation of the very worn keyboards. The organ retains the original mechanical action and virtually all of the original pipes.

E. G. & G. Hook firm started in 1872.  In 1872, the name became E.G.&G.Hook and Hastings, and from 1882 untill closing in 1935 was called Hook and Hastings Co.  While in business the Hook firm manufactured a total of 2614 pipe organs. Of the 292 3-manual instruments built, very few are left in he United States, and the one which was in our 5th building was recently restored and installed in Berlin, Germany.
(This text revised from a flier passed out when the noted organist, Matthias Schmelmer played here on 12 September 2008)

Stoplist of the E. G. & G. Hook Pipe Organ, Opus 283, 1860 (1716 pipes)

Great (56 notes)

Open Diapason 8' 56 pipes (17 display pipes)
Melodia 8' 39 pipes
Std Diapason Bass 8' 17 pipes
Principal 4' 56 pipes
Twelfth 2-2/3' 56 pipes
Fifteenth 2' 56 pipes
Mixture 1'/3' 112 pipes
Sesquialtera 2/3' 112 pipes
Trumpet Treble 8' 44 pipes
Trumpet Bass 8' 12 pipes

Swell (56 notes)

Bourdon Treble 16' 44 pipes
Bourdon Bass 16' 12 pipes
Open Daipason* 8' 56 pipes 
(low 8va added 1913)
Viol di Gaumba TC 8' 44 pipes
Std Diapason Treble 8' 44 pipes
Std Diapason Bass 8' 12 pipes
Principal 4' 56 pipes
Violin 4' 56 pipes
Flute Harmonique 4' 56 pipes
Fifteenth 2' 56 pipes
Fifteenth 2' 56 pipes
Dulciana Cornet II 1+3/5' 112 pipes
Trumpet Treble 8' 44 pipes
Trumpet Bass 8' 12 pipes
Oboe TC 8' 44 pipes

Choir 56 notes

Eolina Tc 16' 44 pipes
Open Diapason 8' 56 pipes
Dulciana 8' 56 pipes (tuned sharp)
Viola d'Amour TC 8' 44 pipes
Clarabella TC 8' 44 pipes
Std Diapason Trebble 8' 44 pipes
Std Diapason Bass 8' 12 pipes
Flute a Chimnee 4' 56 pipes
Celestina 2' 56 pipes
(originally 4', made to speak 8va higher by harmonic holes)
Clarionet TC 8' 44 pipes

Pedal (27 notes) (flat)

Dble Open Diapason 16' 27 pipes
Dble Std Diapason 16' 27 pipes
Violoncello 8/ 27 pipes
Grand Possaune 16' 27 pipes


Swell the Great
Swell to Choir
Choir to Great sub 8va
Great to Pedal
Swell to Pedal
Choir to Pedal

Pedals at Octaves 
Pedal Check

Bellows Signal
Balanced Swell Pedal (replaced hitchdown 1913)

Unlabeled Pedals (added 1913?)

Swell Piano
Swell Forte
Great to Pedal Reversible
Great Piano
Great Forte

Leslie Havens, Founder

Courtesy of M Upton
Courtesy of M Upton
William A Goodwin

09/09/30 - 12/07/13

Bill Goodwin was born in Elgin IL on Sept 9, 1930 and was a great blessing to his parents Ernest and Doris Goodwin. He graduate from Knox College with a degree in Physics. Bill was a cherished member, organist and music director here at the First Congregational Church in Woburn, MA. He played the 1860 E.G.&G. Hook Pipe Organ (Opus 283) for over 30 years. He established the Organ Restoration Fund to maintain this beloved historic instrument.

Bill Goodwin entered the army in 1952 and was stationed in Maryland. On his weekend leaves, he took to studying the organ. Even after his honorable discharge in 1954, he continued interest in the organ. He was recruited by his college professor to work for Baird Inc and was assigned to work with the CIA on the now declassified SR71 aircraft in AREA 51. He worked for Baird Inc for many years, until he bought out the audio division and started his own company, Keyword Associates, with his business partner Judi Ozuransky. Bill used his audio expertise to set the First Congregational Church up with its own Audio/Video room, to get our services out to the community. 

Bill was an avid sailor and a longtime member of the Marblehead Yacht Club. He shared numerous afternoons on his boat with many members of this congregation. He was a strong supporter of the arts and animal organizations. He mentored many musicians throughout the years and many of them performed at our church services. Bill often teamed up with our soloist Marguerite Upton, where they regularly shared their musical talents with the Veterans Association in Bedford, MA. He unselfishly reached out to the community by putting on a monthly dinner through the Dwelling Place, where people enjoyed his signature "Roasted Pork" dinner.

Bill Goodwin was a behind the scenes type of man; you didn't always see him, but that was because he was busy fixing what needed to be fixed and doing what needed to be done. If you did see him, he was usually accompanied by a dog or two.

Today we dedicate this Sunday's service to honor everything that Bill Goodwin meant to our Church Family. As we adjust to the loss of his great influence, we must be conscious of Bill's love for this church and know that we can honor him by continuing to support and care for this Church, each other and the historic organ he cherished so much.

The concert in Memory of Bill Goodwin held at the First Congregational Church, on May 4, 2014, at 3pm, was a huge success.
Lovely piano music played by Renelle Hebert! Come and listen!
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