1934 - 1949  1950 - 1969  1970 - 1989  1980 - 1989  1990 - 2000  2001 -


1934 - 1949



-Patent Granted for the tone-wheel organ. The Organ was officially unveiled to the public at the first (and only) Industrial Arts Exposition in Radio City’s RCA building on April 15th, 1935. Pietro A. Yon, organist of St. Patrick’s Cathedral, and Fritz Reiner, who later became conductor of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, took turns at the keyboard. George Gershwin also performed on the new Instrument. He was so impressed that he immediately ordered one. Critical acclaim at the debut was virtually unanimous.


-June, First electric Hammond organ, model A, goes into production. From serial number 2501 onwards the deeper cabinet that would last with few changes to the B-3. is used and model is designated AB


-December. Model BC, the same as model AB but in  addition to the regular tone-wheel generator, had a Chorus Generator consisting of an extra bank of tone-wheels slightly detuned to produce a rich, full animation.



-FTC complained that the Hammond instrument was not an organ and that it could not produce an ‘infinite’ number of tone variations. A year later after extensive hearings and an impartial panel test at the University of Chicago Chapel, the FTC ruled that Hammond had the right to call its instrument an organ. But it must stop claiming ‘an infinite number of tones’; it could only claim 253,000,000 possible combinations.
-Introduction of the Novachord. Although not truly an organ, it was the predecessor to all electronic organs and the forerunner of today’s synthesizer.
-First industry consumer magazine: Hammond Times.
-Introduction of the Hammond Concert Model E (July 37-July 42) The first Hammond Organ with a 32 note A.G.O. pedalboard (concave & radiating). This model also featured two expression pedals, two separate tremulants for Swell and Great manuals and preset pistons in place of Preset Keys. Large advertisements for the organ ran in The Diapason, the official publication of A.G.O. (American Guild of Organists).


-Introduction of the Hammond/Aeolian player organ. Electronically similar to the BC console, but could be played with rolls like a player piano. Floor dimensions as the BC, but higher back section to accommodate the pneumatic action.


-Introduction of the models C (September)  and D (June). The C was the same as the AB but in a "Church" cabinet which was enclosed and featured church styling. The D was the "Church" Cabinet version of the BC.
-Introduction of Hammond Reverberation.


-Introduction of the Solovox. This instrument was designed to augment a piano with organ and orchestral sounds. Played one key at a time, it produced a sound through its own external speaker.



-Hammond is selected to build specially designed models for military use. Many of these instruments are still in use today in armed service chapels all over the world. The console is identical to the Model D except for the decorative woodwork and provision for detachable handles. The tone cabinet (model G-40) contains two amplifiers and four speakers mounted in a horizontal row and has reverb. Produced from June 1941 to November 1944


-True vibrato perfected and made available on home and church models. Only tremulant was previously available.


-Introduction of the Hammond Spinet Organ, the first of its kind in the world. Sales of the ‘Cinderella’, as it was then called, exceeded all previous sales of all models combined in six short years. Even six years after its introduction, spinet customers came into stores with a 50% down payment with no promise of a delivery date.
-Hammond Concert Model RT introduced. In addition to a 32-note A.G.O. pedalboard, this organ had a unique pedal solo system that employed the synthesizing system of the Solovox and Novachord.
- Model B2 introduced. the same as the BV but with split vibrato, 'soft' and 'normal' overall volume tabs.