Jan Jongepier

The organ in the Hervormde Kerk, Ilpendam
Het ORGEL 94 (1998), nr. 4, 23-28 [summary]

Nicolaas Adolf Willembroek built the organ at Ilpendam in 1728 for the Grote Kerk at De Rijp. Flentrop Orgelbouw restored it in 1994. Jan Jongepier was advisor. Willembroek (1697-1750) was Hermanus Willenbroock's son. The elder Willenbroock was organ builder at Hamburg and worked with Frans Caspar Schnitger Jr. on the large organ at Alkmaar in 1723-1725; Willenbroock began his own shop at Alkmaar after that.

The pipes of the organ at De Rijp, the Ruispijp and the full-compass Sexquialter show the influence of Schnitger. In 1759 Onderhorst worked on the organ, in 1776 Blötz, in 1782 Keerman, in 1788 Strumphler, who maintained the instrument until Knipscheer took over in 1824.

In 1855 the organ was sold to Ilpendam. Johannes van Nieuwkerk started the removal of the organ, Flaes completed it. Van Nieuwkerk renewed the lower case, extended the manual compass and made a new disposition using the old and two new stops. In 1909 Van Gelder replaced the diagonal bellows with a reservoir.

Goal of the restoration in 1997 was repairing the present state of the organ. During the restoration important parts of the organ's history were recovered. It was already known that the organ contained pipes older than 1728. Now it became apparent that Barend Smit was the maker of these pipes. Furthermore, the windchest of the Onderpositief appeared to be a 17th century chest. The chest seemed to be made for a small organ, as did Smit's Holpijp. It is possible that the pipes and the chest belong together. Investigation of the Onderpositief Quint 3 showed that its pipes were once front pipes. All in all, it is quite possible that Willembroek took over a 17th-century Smit-positive with its front in his organ.