The first musical instrument used in the Lake Village Free Baptist church was a small “lap organ’, a melodeon pumped with one elbow and not very comfortable in operation. A seraphine and a reed organ were later used, and about 1886, a $1200 pipe organ was installed in the rear gallery, which the congregation faced during the singing of the hymns. On December 15, l890, the old church burned, just as it was to be thoroughly renovated, and the plans included the moving of the organ to the front of the auditorium.
The present pipe organ has served the congregation for more than one hundred and twenty-two years , and is known as one of the finest surviving examples of the work of George Horatio Ryder [1838-1922], prominent Boston organ-builder who opened his own shop in 1870. It is no doubt the only surviving [unaltered] Ryder organ in it’s original location. The organ’s well-made and pleasing tracker action is a finer and more durable mechanism than ay of the later pneumatic and electric systems, which do not have a direct mechanical linkage between the keys and the pipes.
The organ was built in Reading Massachusetts, as Opus 168 of Geo. H. Ryder & Co. and on Friday May 27, 1892, the LACONIA DEMOCRAT described the new church building and stated that….The new Park St. church will be formally dedicated this [Friday] afternoon at 2 o’clock and following the dedication there will be an inaugural organ concert, at which time the following talent will be present and take part in the exercises: Prof. Ryder, the maker of the organ….
There are 820 wood and metal pipes in the organ. The only modernization the organ has received is the electric blower for the wind, which takes the place of the hand-pumping mechanism.
The organ, still in pristine condition, is considered one of the finest organs in the city.