BAGO History Quiz Answers

Trivia Answer for November 2020

Answer – None of the above. Although Rudolph Elis lamented the lack of appreciation of the public for organ music, it is not clear that he supported unionization. Harold Gleason advocated that church musicians stand up for their rights and increased pay but was against unionization. Edward Grossman made it plain that “the organist’s work is part of worship and that the idea of adopting labor methods, such as picketing and other evils, has no place in this profession.”

Trivia Answer for October 2020

Dean Robinson said: “His [Karg-Elert’s] concert was both a revelation and a disappointment, the latter because of the type of registration different enough from what I imagined for his works, that was in a sense disillusioning. We greatly enjoyed the man himself, simple, unassuming, naïve, enthusiastic, a thorough artist.”

Trivia Answer for September 2020


The first newsletter for the Chapter was published in October 1951 and was called “The Bulletin”.  It can be found on page 238 of this document


Trivia Answer for May 2020

The first woman who was Dean of the Boston Chapter was Ruth Barrett Arno/Phelps. She had been active in the Chapter since coming to Boston in 1934 as the successor to Claude Saunier at the First Church of Christ, Scientist (The Mother Church). She became Dean in January 1949.

Edith Lang was a noted Boston theater organist in 1921. In the twenties it was in style for members of the profession to play for the movies. Dean Marshall, in his annual report of 1929, said: “ … theatre music is a professional occupation for organists today and approaches, if it does not exceed in importance, church organ playing.”

Mary Crowley Vivian was Dean of the Chapter 1958-1960. She was a graduate of the Curtis Institute, where she studied with Alexander McCurdy, and of Radcliffe College, where she studies at the Longy School of Music. Her teacher these was E. Power Biggs, and she became known as his protegee.A well-known recitalist in her time, Vivian was a fellow of the American Guild of Organists and performed at several AGO conventions.

Trivia Answer for April 2020:

In renaming the Massachusetts Chapter, all three names were considered:

  • The Greater Boston Chapter
  • The Hub Chapter
  • The Boston Chapter

The name “Boston Chapter was chosen as “it was unlikely that there will ever be a need of ameding it as the new title pretty accurately decribes the area it serves.” – H. Winthrop Martin, A History of the American Guild of Organists in Boston Massachusetts 1905-1954