107 years after taking up residence in what would be our second home, we have picked up and started fresh in new offices and shop space. But we have not gone too far, just across the street to 416 Pine in Highland, IL.
Following the organization of the company in 1906, the Wick Brothers set up shop in an old factory building near the square in downtown Highland. In only a few short years however, that space would prove inadequate, and a brand new factory was built next to the railroad tracks at what would become 1100 5th Street.
For 107 years we plied our trade at this location, and built additions periodically to keep up as business expanded. As the decades came and went, the facility started to wear and age and maintenance became a regular activity. Fully aware of the monumental amount of repairs that would be necessary across the entire campus (Seven acres), and no longer in need of 88,000 sq.ft. of manufacturing space, it was decided to place the entire property up for sale.
January 1, 2017 saw the closing on the property, and new ownership. It also meant we had to follow through and begin to move 107 years of organ building to our new location. One would think that since our downsizing, this task would be relatively simple and easy. Not so!
Phase one in the great migration was our offices, carefully orchestrated so that we could maintain uninterrupted service for our customers. This not only involved the relocation of people, desks and communications equipment, but 91 heavy file cabinets containing 111 years of correspondence, drawings, contracts, and wiring files. In addition we moved Wicks Opus 1, which now sits just inside the front doors of the new offices.
Phase two will see our entire shop follow suit. We still have all the machinery (Presses, saws, planers, sanders, clamps, spray booths etc) and inventory (Lumber, metals, fasteners etc) with which to construct complete instruments, as well as rebuild and maintain existing instruments. We also have assorted “experienced” manual and pedal pipework in stock, voicing samples, racks of completed Direct-Electric magnets etc. This will all take place while simultaneously working on several current projects.
We hope to have completed this move by June 2017. So if you plan on traveling through Highland and would like to stop by, please do so at the following address:
Wicks Pipe Organ Co.
416 Pine Street
Highland, IL 62249