Title and statement of responsibility area
Hellmuth Wolff Organ Collection
General material designation
- Textual record
- Graphic material
Other title information
Title statements of responsibility
- Source of title proper: Title based on the name of the creator.
Level of description
Edition statement of responsibility
Class of material specific details area
Statement of scale (cartographic)
Statement of projection (cartographic)
Statement of coordinates (cartographic)
Statement of scale (architectural)
Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)
Dates of creation area
- Wolff & Associés Ltée
- Wolff, Hellmuth, 1937-2013
Physical description area
Approximately 119 m of textual records, graphic material and objects.
Publisher's series area
Title proper of publisher's series
Parallel titles of publisher's series
Other title information of publisher's series
Statement of responsibility relating to publisher's series
Numbering within publisher's series
Note on publisher's series
Archival description area
Name of creator
Name of creator
Hellmuth Wolff (b Zurich, 3 September 1937; d Montreal 30 Nov 2013) was an important and respected organ builder who took a leading role in the revival of historical organ building practices in North America in the early 1960s. He studied and apprenticed in Europe and the United States before he immigrated to Canada in 1963 to work for the company Casavant Frères in St-Hyacinthe, Quebec. In 1968 he established his own atelier, Wolff & Associés, in Laval, and started a productive and influential career as a builder of historically-informed tracker organs. Between 1968 and 2008, Wolff designed, built, and installed fifty instruments in churches, universities, concert halls, and homes across North America. For more information, please consult:
Karl J. Raudsepp. "Wolff, Hellmuth." Grove Music Online. Oxford Music Online. Oxford University Press, accessed November 16, 2015, http://www.oxfordmusiconline.com/subscriber/article/grove/music/40946.
Scope and content
The Hellmuth Wolff Organ Collection consists primarily of organ plans, pamphlets, photographs, books and periodicals, and personal correspondence. The majority of these documents are associated with or represent one of the fifty organs in Wolff’s opus. In addition to depicting Wolff’s instruments, the collection of organ plans also includes Wolff’s drawings for proposed but not-constructed organs, plans by other organ builders, and plans drawn by Wolff that are based on historical models and treatises by writers such as Dom Bédos. Of the photographs, most are associated with specific Wolff organ projects and represent a span date of the late 1960s to the early 2000s. Also in the photograph collection are images of historical organs in Europe, which Wolff presumably used in modelling and designing several of his instruments, as well as images associated with other organ projects by builders such as Casavant Frères, Karl Wilhelm, and Rieger, all of whom Wolff worked with before establishing his own workshop in Laval. The collection of pamphlets includes programs, program notes, and concert series information for several of the Recitals and concerts performed on Wolff’s instruments. Of the periodicals and books, titles include The American Organist, Choir & Organ, and Orgelforum. Also in the collection are several three-dimensional models, or maquettes, of Wolff organs.
Immediate source of acquisition
Gift from the estate of Hellmuth Wolff.
The Hellmuth Wolff Organ Collection is divided into 15 series.
Language of material
Script of material
Language and script note
Collection material is primarily in English. Some items are in French, as well as German, Italian, and Spanish.
Location of originals
Availability of other formats
A short description can be found in the Library Catalogue at http://mcgill.worldcat.org/oclc/946629899.
Restrictions on access
Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication
The Hellmuth Wolff Collection is open to research. Certain restrictions on use, copying and/or publication of materials may apply. Researchers are advised to contact the Marvin Duchow Music Library prior to visiting.
Uploaded finding aid
The status of copyright on the contents of the Hellmuth Wolff Collection is governed by the Copyright Law of Canada.
Researchers wishing to cite this collection should include the following information: container number, <collection name>, Marvin Duchow Music Library, Schulich School of Music, McGill University, Montréal, Québec.
Standard number area
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Rules or conventions
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Dates of creation, revision and deletion
Finding Aid prepared in 2015 by David Henkelman; edited by Sharon Rankin.
Revision 22 June 2016; updated and entered into AtoM by Geneviève Beaudry, May 2019.