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Hammond Organ Co.

4200 W Diversey Ave.

Evanston native Laurens Hammond was a natural born inventor but even though he could not play music, his most groundbreaking invention is the instrument that bears his name. In 1934 he patented an organ that would run on an electric synchronous motor that he developed. The Hammond organ could replicate the sound of a pipe organ—along with millions of other tones—but at a price and size that could make it affordable and accessible for homes along with churches and bars. Shortly afterward, Chicago’s First Church of Deliverance introduced the Hammond organ to the gospel choir. Sales took off and Hammond opened its main factory and headquarters in 1949. During the 1950s and 1960s, the Hammond’s B-3 model became especially popular with jazz, rock and R&B musicians and has remained a part of the genres today. Suzuki bought the company in 1991 and while its organs have included digital technology, its earliest models are still sought after worldwide.

– A.C. 

Caption: Former location of the Hammond Organ Co..

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