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Arthur GeePrint Page Print this page

22-June-2016
22-June-2016
Photographs supplied by Arthur Garland

An organ stop commemorates Arthur Gee.

Arthur Gee was born in Launceston in 1879 and was the eldest child of Richard and Emily Gee, of 'Tara', 323 Brisbane Street, Launceston.  

Arthur received his higher education at the Launceston High School, conducted by Mr E. A. Nathan, in Frederick Street in Milton Hall, now owned by the Baptist Church. Arthur was associated with the family business of booksellers, stationers and agents for 'Bell' organs and pianos at 106-108 Charles Street, until his father retired and closed the business.

He had outstanding musical ability and began his career as a church organist at about 12 or 14 years. He played the organ at the Launceston Baptist Tabernacle, and assisted his mother who was organist at both Margaret and Paterson Street Methodist Churches. A few years later he became organist and choirmaster at Margaret Street while continuing to assist at Paterson Street.

Arthur took formal piano study with Mr H. J. Rushfirth and later studied the organ with Mr W. W. Thornthwaite, organist at St. John's Church.

On 10yh January 1906, Arthur married Louise Scott, and they had two children, Lily Irene and George Rock. The family moved to Burnie where Arthur was appointed organist and choirmaster at St. George's Anglican Church. Here he established himself as a successful music teacher, and was musical director of the Burnie Amateur Operatic and Dramatic Society. He was also a very keen amateur photographer. Three more boys were born at Burnie.

The Gee family returned to Launceston in 1925 and Arthur became organist and choirmaster at Paterson Street Methodist Church where he remained for three years. His next appointment was at St. John's Church as organist and choirmaster from 1928 to 1950. Arthur Gee had a music studio at his home at 171 St. John Street, then at 6 Elizabeth Street, and in the city at Crabtree's building at the corner of St. John and York Streets. These he shared with his daughter Irene. Arthur Gee also taught at the Launceston Church Grammar School.

In 1940 he was appointed city organist, and had oversight of the Brindley water organ in the Albert Hall. In his earlier years, Arthur was one of the first candidates in Tasmania for examination with the Trinity College of Music. After his return to Launceston, he continued his association with Trinity College, with the great contribution of fifty years service.

Arthur Gee was a member of St. Andrew's Royal Arch Chapter, and a Past Master of Emu Lodge, Burnie. He retired from St. John's in 1950 and died in Launceston on 29th June 1951, at the age of 72.

In June 1955, a new organ stop, a claribel flute of 61 pipes, was added to St. John's organ, and was dedicated to the memory of Arthur Rock Gee by Archdeacon L. N. Sutton.

Location

Address:157 St John Street, St John's Church, Launceston, 7250
State:TAS
Area:AUS
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -41.439837
Long: 147.141248
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Details

Monument Type:Structure
Monument Theme:People
Sub-Theme:Arts
Approx. Event Start Date:1928
Approx. Event End Date:1950

Dedication

Approx. Monument Dedication Date:June-1955
Front Inscription

A.M.D.G.

The Clarabel flute in this organ is a memorial to Arthur Rock Gee

Organist  1928 - 1950

 

Source: MA,JG
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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