Timothy Gilbert

Last updated
Timothy Gilbert Gilbert.jpg
Timothy Gilbert

Timothy Gilbert (January 5, 1797 July 19, 1865) was an American piano manufacturer, abolitionist and religious organizer in Boston, Massachusetts. His brother Lemuel Gilbert (February 10, 1804 – February 27, 1864) was also a piano manufacturer. [1]



Gilbert was born in Enfield, Massachusetts, the second child of Timothy Gilbert and Fear Shaw [1] and worked on his father's farm until the age of 21. He arrived in Boston December 1818, where he apprenticed with cabinet maker Levi Ruggles, and later worked for piano maker John Osborn before becoming a piano maker in his own right. He was an active member of the Baptist Church, to which he converted in 1817, and was an outspoken abolitionist. He maintained his home as a station of the Underground Railroad, and on the passage of the Fugitive slave laws Gilbert announced in the papers that his door would remain open to runaway slaves. He was also member and director in secular charitable organizations [2] and served as president of the Boylston Bank from 1855 to 1860. He was president of the Boston Vigilance Committee, an organization that aided fugitive slaves. [3]

Gilbert married Mary Wetherbee in 1823 (Ashburnham, Mass., July 7, 1796–December 1843), and their only child, Mary Eunice, was born June 8, 1827. Following Mary's death, Gilbert married Alice Davis November 28, 1844, and in 1846 they adopted Alice (b. April 23, 1846). Their second daughter, Martha Fear Gilbert, was born April 27, 1847.

Gilbert died July 19, 1865, at his home in Boston. His funeral was held at the Tremont Temple at the expense of the Evangelical Baptist Benevolent and Missionary Society, both of which he had been instrumental in forming. He is buried at Mount Auburn cemetery.


Currier & Gilbert

Gilbert entered a partnership with Boston piano maker Ebenezer Currier (1801–1835) [4] by 1826, [5] and they were listed at 393 Washington street by 1829, [6] but the partnership was dissolved that spring. Currier, with new partner Philip Brown, opened a showroom on the first floor, where they offered "all kinds of Upright & Horizontal Piano Fortes...embracing the latest improvements," [7] and in 1831 he patented a square piano with hammers above the strings. [8]

nameboard label ca.1840 Tgilbert&colabel ca1835-1845.png
nameboard label ca.1840
Washington street, ca.1852 1852 338to483Washingtonstreet,boston.svg
Washington street, ca.1852

T. Gilbert, T. Gilbert & Co.

402 and 406 Washington street; 393 and 400 Washington street

Gilbert established his own factory in his previous employer John Osborn's former workshops at 402 Washington street, near Beach street. [9] By 1834 the firm reorganized as T. Gilbert & Company, with Gilbert's brother Lemuel Gilbert and brother in law [1] Henry Safford (1802-c.1872) [10] as partners. [11] In 1835 their address was listed as 400 Washington street, and this year alone included Currier & Gilbert's old address at 393 Washington—the entry for Currier was his last and did not give a business address—and in 1836 brother in law [1] Increase Gilbert was admitted as partner. [12] In 1837 T. Gilbert & Co. were awarded a silver medal for one of the pianos they showed at the Exhibition of the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Association, placed after fellow Boston manufacturers Chickering & Co., Wilkins & Newhall, and Hallet & Allen for the tone and slightly heavy touch of their piano, [13] but the company was removed from competition at the following exhibition for advertising "the fact, that they have not, to their knowledge, a personal friend among the selected judges." [14] They received a silver medal for a horizontal piano at the 1839 Franklin Institute exhibition in Philadelphia, [15] and a diploma for the third best square piano at the 1841 exhibition in Boston. [16]

In 1841 Gilbert patented improvements in uprights in which he claimed a spring attached to the hammer butt for the combined purposes of returning the hammer to its resting position, reseating the damper against the strings, and keeping the hammer in communication with the key, and he also included a screw adjustment for jack position and damper timing, and a secondary notch on the hammer butt to facilitate shakes and trills. [17] Piano historian Daniel Spillane described that this patent was for "a number of ideas and inventions relating to uprights and squares… and a number of lesser improvements which came to nothing", but considered the upright action significant because it "outlined many ideas afterward claimed by Wornum… in England", [18] referring to an 1842 patent by this manufacturer that Edgar Brinsmead dubbed the "tape-check action" in the 1879 edition of his History of the Pianoforte, [19] in which the last claim was for methods coupling the damper and hammer. [20]

The same year Gilbert was assigned tuner Edwin Fobes' patent for manufacturing hammers with a layer of soft leather covering a block of cork glued to the top portion of the hammer molding. [21] Gilbert also licensed the Aeolian attachment patented by independent mechanic Obed. Coleman in 1844, which fitted a simple reed organ onto the bottom plank of an ordinary square piano, arranged to be played directly by the keys of the piano. [22] Spillane described that Gilbert & Co. licensed the invention in 1846 "for a small figure"—an article about the inventor from January 1845 reported that the firm paid $25,000 for the exclusive rights to manufacture and sell pianos with it in Massachusetts, while New York manufacturers Nunns & Clark paid $25,000 in cash and offered $50,000 royalties for its use in the rest of the country. [23] Spillane wrote that although the Aeolian attachment received some notice as a novelty in the Boston and New York papers, "little came of this…it having been proved that the piano section, at least, required to be tuned every month to keep it in tolerably good condition" [24] a charge the firm reported had been raised by "many of the piano forte makers and others in their interest" and which they attempted to meet when they advertised in 1850 they would thereafter install the attachment only in pianos built expressly for it. [25]

William H. Jameson (1818—1887) joined the company as a partner about 1843. Jameson married Gilbert's daughter Mary Eunice in 1845. [26]

US1970 18410210 mannerofconstructingtheactionpartofpianofortes fig1.svg
T. Gilbert, fig. 1, U.S. patent No. 1,970
US3548 18440417 pianoforte fig1.svg
O. M. Coleman, fig. 1, U.S. patent 3,548: the Aeolian Attachment

Patent Aeolian Pianoforte Manufactory

Patent Aeolian Piano Forte Manufactory, ca.1850 TGilbertfactory1850.png
Patent Aeolian Piano Forte Manufactory, ca.1850

In 1847 [27] Gilbert & Co. erected new granite-front warerooms at 400 Washington street, opposite Boylston Market. According to their entry in The Stranger's Guide in the City of Boston published in 1848 the new facilities cost about $20,000 (~$516,900 in 2021) and together with two buildings in the rear occupied over 8,000 square feet (740 m2), the whole being powered and heated by steam, [28] and in a brief and not entirely reliable retrospective of the Boston piano industry published by the Boston Globe in 1915, Arthur Brayley described that the warerooms were connected by bridges with the factory across the yard, and an underground passage connected the machine shop with the boiler room, "which was said to be a refuge for runaway slaves". [29] The sketch of the firm for Edwin Freedley's Leading Pursuits and Leading Men of 1856 described that they manufactured every part of their pianos except the cases on their own premises, and although their operations were conducted in from twenty-five to thirty rooms they went on "with the most perfect order and system." [30] The 1848 article also stated the firm employed about sixty workers, and had manufactured between 3,000 and 4,000 pianos, upwards 500 of them with the Aeolian attachment.

In 1847 Gilbert patented a cast iron frame for grand pianos with the ordinary resisting bars combined with bars perpendicular to the strings—one of which was to be connected with the front edge of the sounding board—in order to prevent the case sides from twisting, [31] as well as a double action for horizontal pianos with springs meant to support the weight of the hammers and dampers in order to lighten the touch of the keys. [32]

In 1850 Gilbert listed $80,000 capital, with eighty workers and sales worth $112,500, ranking him the second largest piano manufacturer in Boston after Jonas Chickering. [33] The Rich Men of Massachusetts, published in 1851, stated Gilbert had made more than 4,400 pianos to date, upwards 1,100 with the Aeolian attachment, and estimated his fortune as $100,000. [34] T. Gilbert & Co. were awarded a diploma for a piano with the aeolian attachment exhibited by piano dealers Waters & Berry at the 1850 American Institute fair, placed third after D. Benson & Co., of Buffalo, and J. H. Grovesteen of New York. [35]

In 1851 Gilbert patented actions for horizontal and vertical pianos where escapement was operated by a lower extension of the hammer butt instead of by a fixed button in order to reduce the number of parts to allow a lighter touch, and with an additional projection to limit the motion of the jack to improve repetition. [36] They granted their New York and general agencies to Horace Waters the same year, and Waters advertised their iron frame squares with the circular scale as well as upright grands and boudoir pianos. [37] Gilbert & Co. received honorable mention for a square piano with the Aeolian attachment at the 1851 London Exhibition, [38] a silver medal for the second best piano at the 1851 American Institute fair, [39] a diploma for an aelioan attachment at the 1852 American Institute fair [40] and a bronze medal for the third best square at the 1853 Exhibition of the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Association. [41]

484 Washington street

nameboard label ca.1855 T. Gilbert and Company, Boston piano nameboard label ca.1855.png
nameboard label ca.1855
Patent Aeolian Piano Forte Manufactory, ca.1856 484washingtonstreetca1856.jpg
Patent Aeolian Piano Forte Manufactory, ca.1856

In 1853 Gilbert & Company's street address changed from 400 to 484 when Washington Street was renumbered. [42]

In 1856 they advertised they had made upwards of 6,000 pianos, as many as 2,300 with the Aeolian attachment. [43] They were awarded a bronze medal for the third best grand action piano at the American Institute Fair, after Chickering & Sons and Steinway & Sons, [44] and a silver medal for a grand piano and a bronze medal for a square at the Exhibition of the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Association. [45] In 1857 they advertised they had adopted all new scales, as well as a "new improved action", [46] and by 1859 advertised having made nearly 8,000 pianos, including squares, full grand and Orpheons, directing attention to their obliquely strung parlor grands "as superior to all others now manufactured". [47] They were awarded a silver medal for grands and parlor grands, after Chickering & Sons, and a bronze medal for a piano with an aeolian attachment at the 1860 Exhibition of Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Association, where their grand piano was judged to be "an instrument of great excellence, and equalled by few." [48]

Gilbert & Company's relative importance appears to have decreased by the early 1860s, and one late account estimates their output as six pianos a week at that time, the fourth largest Boston piano manufacturer after Chickering & Sons (20 pianos a week), Hallet, Davis & Co. (10) and Hallet & Cumston (8). [49] By 1864 they were listed at 20 Beach street only, with 484 Washington street listed for piano manufacturer William Bourne, formerly of 460 and 611 Washington.


The Free Baptist Church

Gilbert was originally a member of the Charles Street Baptist church, but left it for the Federal Street Baptist Church which was more aligned with his views on slavery—Fulton wrote it had been said Gilbert first tested his new congregation by "fill[ing] his pew with colored people [and that] no one objected", [50] and more recent accounts state he was expelled from the Charles street church for this reason [51] —and left the Federal Street church April 1839 to join the Free Baptist church whose first services were held April 21, 1839 at Baldwin Place, with 82 attending. A sermon was given by the congregation's future first pastor Nathaniel Colver, with whom Gilbert had corresponded since Colver's lecturing tour the previous year. [52]

The non-segregated, anti-slavery, temperance, and anti-secret society Free Church first met in a room on Tremont Row, then at Congress Hall, and at the Museum Building at the corner of Bromfield and Tremont Streets, [53] and by 1841 had 325 members [54]

The Tremont Temple

ca. 1851 Tremonttemple ca1851.png
ca. 1851

In 1843, Gilbert, S. W. Shipley, Thomas Gould and William S. Damrell raised $55,000 to purchase the failed Tremont Theater on School Street in order to establish a permanent and self-supporting home for the church. The building was remodeled at the additional cost of more than $24,000, during which time Gilbert left the management of his business with his partner Jameson. The Tremont Temple was dedicated December 1843, and the free-seat church was supported by renting out its storefronts and offices, [55] as well as the 88 feet (27 m) by 90 feet (27 m), 2,000 seat hall. [56] The deed for the building and land was transferred by the four owners to a trust in 1844. [57]

The Tremont Temple burned on March 31, 1852, destroying it and a neighboring building. Early estimates put losses at about $200,000, including the building, which was insured for $42,000, A. J. Shepard's piano and music store valued at $8,000, and Thomas Thompson's collection of paintings valued $45,000. [58]

ca. 1872 Tremonttemple ca1872.png
ca. 1872

A new building designed by William Washburn was started on the site in May; the first service was held in the vestry a year later, and the new Tremont Temple was completed December, 1853, [57] with a 124 feet (38 m) by 72 feet (22 m) main hall capable of seating 2,500, and smaller 1000 seat and 300 seat halls. Its value was projected to be $100,000 fully furnished [59] but it cost more than $125,000. This was intended to be offset by renting out four stores and a number of offices and studios, and the entire second story was occupied by the Young Men's Christian Association.

By 1855 the four trustees found it impossible to continue holding the property, and at a meeting of prominent local Baptists that March it was determined that the property be secured to the denomination. Ownership was transferred temporarily to a group of thirty-seven until the necessary subscriptions for a new society for the purpose were raised, and in June the deed was conveyed to trustees Thomas Richardson, Frederick Gould, J. W. Converse, G. W. Chipman and J. W. Merrill for $37,000 more than the outstanding liabilities. An act of incorporation was secured for the Evangelical Baptist Benevolent and Missionary Society in 1857; it was organized the following May, the deed transferred to it in November, and in June, 1859 the society executed a lease granting the use of the great hall, organ and furniture to the Tremont Street Baptist Church and Society for a free seat church on Sundays. [57]

The second Tremont Temple burned August 14, 1879, with an estimated loss of $200,000. It was insured for $100,000 (~$2.52 million in 2021). [60] It was rebuilt the following year [61] for about $180,000 [57] and was destroyed in a fire March 19, 1893. [62]

American Baptist Anti-Slavery Convention

Gilbert joined the American Baptist Anti-Slavery Convention, formed at the Tremont Chapel in 1840, [63] which published a series of inflammatory letters denouncing slave-holding as an ungraduated sin which precipitated a rift in the theoretically neutral Triennial Convention. [64] The abolitionists were excluded from the ballots at the 1841 convention, and lost an influential position on the Board of Foreign Missions, and in response the Anti-Slavery Convention formed their own provisional foreign committee in 1842. Gilbert was elected treasurer and was charged with collecting funds that otherwise would be donated to the American Board of Foreign Missions—he explained later "the majority of the abolitionists have not so much objection to receive the money of slaveholders, as to be associated with them in evangelizing the world, and thus, by the copartnership, acknowledge them to be Christians in good standing in the Baptist church." [65]

Gilbert sent funds to missionaries, including Adoniram Judson and Jonathan Wade, providing they affirmed they were abolitionists, and even proposed establishing missions entirely independent of the Board of Foreign Missions, but refrained from joining the American and Foreign Missionary Society (later called the American Baptist Free Mission Society) [66] which attracted many of his colleagues, stating "When I shall become convinced, that there is no good reason to hope that the old missionary organization will purge itself from the charge of receiving money in such a way as to enter into a copartnership with slaveholders, and giving its sanction to that wicked institution, then I shall be prepared to abandon them, not provisionally, but forever." [67] In 1845 the Anti-Slavery Convention as well as the provisional committee were dissolved, after the formation of the Southern Baptist Convention and dissolution of the Triennial Convention, [68] and Gilbert joined the mainstream Missionary Union.

Related Research Articles

Chickering & Sons was an American piano manufacturer located in Boston, Massachusetts. The company was founded in 1823 by Jonas Chickering and James Stewart, but the partnership dissolved four years later. By 1830 Jonas Chickering became partners with John Mackay, manufacturing pianos as "Chickering & Company", and later "Chickering & Mackays" until the senior Mackay's death in 1841, and reorganized as "Chickering & Sons" in 1853. Chickering pianos continued to be made until 1983.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Mason & Hamlin</span>

Mason & Hamlin is a piano manufacturer based in Haverhill, Massachusetts. Founded in 1854, they also manufactured a large number of pump organs during the 19th century.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Jonas Chickering</span>

Jonas Chickering was a piano manufacturer in Boston, Massachusetts.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Wm. Knabe & Co.</span> US piano manufacturing company in Baltimore, Maryland

Wm. Knabe & Co. was a piano manufacturing company in Baltimore, Maryland from the middle of the nineteenth century through the beginning of the 20th century, and continued as a division of Aeolian-American at East Rochester, New York until 1982. It is currently a line of pianos manufactured by Samick Musical Instruments.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Alpheus Babcock</span>

Alpheus Babcock was a piano and musical instrument maker in Boston, Massachusetts and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania during the early 19th century. Babcock is best known for patenting a complete iron frame in a single casting used to resist the strain of the strings in square pianos, he also patented a system of stringing in squares, and improvements in piano actions.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Sohmer & Co.</span>

Sohmer & Co. was a piano manufacturing company founded in New York City in 1872. Sohmer & Co. marketed the first modern baby grand piano, and also manufactured pianos with aliquot stringing and bridge agraffes, as well as Cecilian "all-inside" player pianos and Welte-Mignon-Licensee reproducing pianos. Sohmer pianos were owned by U.S. President Calvin Coolidge, and composers Victor Herbert and Irving Berlin. Sohmer is now a line of pianos manufactured by Samick Music Corporation in Korea.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Frederick Mathushek</span> German piano maker

Frederick Mathushek was a piano maker who worked in Worms, Germany, and in New York City and New Haven, Connecticut, during the second half of the nineteenth century. His name was used by several different piano manufacturers through the 1950s, and was filed independently as a trademark for musical instruments in 2005 and 2008.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Robert Wornum</span>

Robert Wornum (1780–1852) was a piano maker working in London during the first half of the 19th century. He is best known for introducing small cottage and oblique uprights and an action considered to be the predecessor of the modern upright action which was used in Europe through the early 20th century. His piano manufacturing business eventually became Robert Wornum & Sons and continued half a century after his death.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Tremont Temple</span> Historic church in Boston, Massachusetts

The Tremont Temple on 88 Tremont Street is a Baptist church in Boston, Massachusetts, affiliated with the American Baptist Churches, USA. The existing multi-storey, Renaissance Revival structure was designed by Boston architect Clarence Blackall, and opened in May 1896. It replaced a much smaller, 1827 structure that had repeatedly suffered damage by fires.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Aeolian Company</span>

The Aeolian Company was a musical-instrument making firm whose products included player organs, pianos, sheet music, records and phonographs. Founded in 1887, it was at one point the world's largest such firm. During the mid 20th century, it surpassed Kimball to become the largest supplier of pianos in the United States, having contracts with Steinway & Sons due to its Duo-Art system of player pianos. It went out of business in 1985.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">William H. Oakes</span>

W. H. Oakes was a music publisher in 19th-century Boston, Massachusetts. He published compositions by Daniel Auber, Henry Russell and others.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Thomas Edward Chickering</span>

Thomas Edward Chickering was a piano manufacturer and soldier.

John Mackay (1774–1841) was a well known and successful ship master and early industrialist in Boston, Massachusetts. John Mackay was born in Boston and he participated in the Mackay family business of shipping started by his father and uncle. He partnered with and financed Alpheus Babcock and Jonas Chickering in early piano manufacturing by using some of his legacy from his wealthy uncle Mungo Mackay.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Mechanics Hall (Boston, Massachusetts)</span>

Mechanics Hall was a building and community institution on Huntington Avenue at West Newton Street, from 1881 to 1959. Commissioned by the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Association, it was built by the noted architect William Gibbons Preston. The building was located between the Boston and Albany railroad yards and Huntington avenue. It was razed for the Prudential Center urban renewal project of the early 1960s. The site is on the north side of Huntington Avenue, and since 1941 has been served by Prudential Station of the MBTA Green Line E branch.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Thomas Edwards (artist)</span>

Thomas Edwards (1795–1869) was an artist in 19th-century Boston, Massachusetts, specializing in portraits. Born in London and trained at the Royal Academy, he worked in Boston in the 1820s-1850s, and in Worcester in the 1860s.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Charles Hubbard (artist)</span> American painter

Charles Hubbard (1801–1875) was an artist in Boston, Massachusetts in the 19th century. He kept a studio on Tremont Row and was affiliated with the Boston Artists' Association. He served as state senator from 1851-1852.

Amory Nelson Hardy or A.N. Hardy (1835–1911) was a photographer in Boston, Massachusetts, in the 19th century. Portrait subjects included US president Chester A. Arthur, clergyman Henry Ward Beecher, politician James G. Blaine, abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison, doctor Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr., jurist Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr., writer Julia Ward Howe, labor activist Florence Kelley, suffragist Mary Livermore, philanthropist Isabella Somerset, and suffragist Frances Willard. He also made "electric-light portraits" of roller skaters in 1883.

Chickering Hall (est.1883) was a concert auditorium in Boston, Massachusetts, in the late 19th century. It occupied the second floor of Chickering and Sons showrooms on Tremont Street, near the corner of West Street. "Bradlee, Winslow and Wetherell were the architects, and Mr. E.P. Treadwell, the decorator. The hall [was] lighted by the Edison electric light." By 1895: "Tremont St., towards Boylston, for some years has been called Piano Row, for a long row of piano agencies occupied a good portion of the block; but of late most of these have migrated to Boylston St. Chickering Hall, at 152 Tremont St., was for many years a favorite place for fashionable musicales, and the headquarters of the musical profession."

The Weber Piano Company is a former piano manufacturing company based in New York City and East Rochester, New York from the middle of the 19th century through the beginning of the 20th century, and continued as a division of Aeolian-American at East Rochester, New York until 1985, when Aeolian went out of business.

Loud Brothers was an American piano designer and manufacturer based in Philadelphia. Established in 1822, it was the leading American piano manufacturer till 1837, when the factory closed due to overproduction, market flooding, and plummeting sales. Four brothers, Thomas Loud, Jr., Philologus Loud, John Loud, and Joseph Loud, were involved with the company. Thomas C. Loud, son of Thomas Loud, Jr., upheld the family reputation till about 1855. The Louds, besides being strong inventors, were important promoters of the industry.


  1. 1 2 3 4 "Gilbert" William Richard Cutter ed. Genealogical and Personal Memoirs Relating to the Families of the State of Massachusetts vol.4, Lewis Historical Publishing Company, 1910 p.2094-2095
  2. president Female Medical Society in 1851 and 1852 - Massachusetts State Record James French Boston, 1851 p.178; The Massachusetts Register no.86, George Adams, Boston, 1852 p.287; director in the American Peace Society The Advocate of Peace for years 1864-5 American Peace Society, Boston
  3. Bearse, Austin (1880). Reminiscences of Fugitive-Slave Law Days in Boston. Boston: Warren Richardson. p.  6. Lock-green.svg
  4. "Ebenezer Ransom Currier (121135)" Currier Family Records of U. S. A. and Canada vol.2, 1984 p.55;
  5. Boston Directory, 1826
  6. Boston Directory 1829
  7. Boston Directory 1830
  8. Ebenezer R. Currier "Horizontal Pianoforte" United States Patent no. X6507 April 22, 1831; Spillane drew attention to this patent for its suggestion of a seven octave compass in a square before 1840 - Daniel Spillane History of the American Piano-forte D. Spillane, New York 1890 p.96
    International Musical Instruments, Inc. of Marion, North Carolina registered the Currier name for use on pianos in 1969, and were purchased by the Kaman Corporation and reorganized as Currier Piano Company, Inc. in 1972. Currier closed 1982 and its assets were assigned the Kaman Aerospace Corp. in 1982, and to Kaman Music Corp. in 1989 - "Currier" United States Trademark 72,328,059 March 17, 1970 Trademark Assignment Record reel/frame 0230/0499, 0432/0276, 0613/0138; Larry Fine The Piano Book The Brookside Press, Boston. 1987. p.87
  9. This address is listed one year as Osborn's house - Darcy Kuronen "John Osborne" The Encyclopaedia of the Piano p.256
  10. Arthur W. Brayley "Henry Gilbert Safford" Schools and Schoolboys of Old Boston Louis P. Hager, Boston 1894 p.290
  11. Stimpson's Boston Directory 1834; Safford appears to have taken over the retail portion of the business in 1852, after which he continued to list the same address as Gilbert & Co., although he is no longer listed as a partner in the concern.
  12. Stimpson's Boston Directory, 1836
  13. "Musical Instruments - Piano-fortes" First Exhibition of the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Association Dutton and Wentworth, Boston 1837 p.41-42
  14. "Musical Instruments and Bells - III. Keyed String Instruments" The Second Exhibition of the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Association Isaac R. Butts, Boston, 1839 p.103-104
  15. "Report of the Committee on Premiums and Exhibitions, Tenth Exhibition of Domestic Manufactures" Journal of the Institute of the State of Pennsylvania and Mechanics' Register. New Series, Vol. XXII. The Franklin Institute, Philadelphia 1839 p.305
  16. "Musical Instruments and Bells - III. Keyed Stringed Instruments - Common Square Piano Fortes" The Third Exhibition of the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Association T. R. Marvin, Boston 1841 p.86
  17. Timothy Gilbert "Manner of constructing the Action part of Pianofortes" United States Patent no. 1,970 February 10, 1841
  18. Daniel Spillane p.91
  19. Edgar Brinsmead History of the Pianoforte Novello, Ewer & Co. London 1879. p.167
  20. Robert Wornum "Pianofortes" English Patent No. 9,262 enrolled August 15, 1842
  21. Edwin Fobes "Manner of constructing the Hammer-heads used in Pianofortes" United States Patent no. 1,971 February 10, 1841
  22. Obed M. Coleman "Pianoforte" United States Patent no. 3,548 April 17, 1844; Moore, John Weeks (1880) [1854]. "Aeolian attachment"  . Complete Encyclopaedia of Music. New York: C. H. Ditson & Company.; mechanic and inventor J. A. Bazin claimed the first batch of reeds he delivered Gilbert were tuned in equal temperament - Robert F. Gellerman The American Reed Organ and the Harmonium p.15
  23. Coleman and his Eolian Attachment The Cincinnati Miscellany, or Antiquities of the West, and Pioneer History vol. I. Caleb Clark, Cincinnati, 1845 p.98
  24. Spillane p.92
  25. advertisement The Brighton and Brookline Business DirectoryGeorge Adams Boston, 1850
  26. E. O. Jameson The Jamesons in America. 1647-1900 The Rumford Press, Boston 1901. p.248
  27. Dorchester Directory, 1850
  28. T. Gilbert & Co." The Stranger's Guide in the City of Boston Andrews & Co., Boston 1848. p.69-69
  29. Arthur W. Brayley, "The First Piano in the United States" The Boston Globe, May 9, 1915
  30. Edwin T. Freedley, ed. Leading Pursuits and Leading Men. A Treatise on the Principal Trades and Manufactures of the United States. Edward Young, Philadelphia 1856 p.440-441
  31. Timothy Gilbert "Metallic Frame for Pianofortes" United States Patent no. 5,202 July 24, 1847
  32. Timothy Gilbert "Piano-forte Action" United States Patent no. 5,216 August 7, 1847
  33. U. S. Manuscript Census of Massachusetts, 1850, schedule 5, Suffolk County, City of Boston, ward 7
  34. Abner Forbes and J. W. Green The Rich Men of Massachusetts W. V. Spencer, Boston. 1851 p.20; The 1850 Census gives this as $75,000
  35. The firm is listed in the report of awards as "T. Gilbert & Son"; Piano fortes - List of Premiums, annual fair of the American Institute, October 1858 Transactions of the American Institute of the city of New-York for the year 1850. Charles Van Benthuysen, Albany, 1851 p.69
  36. Timothy Gilbert "Pianoforte Action" United States Patent no. 8,389 September 30, 1851; Timothy Gilbert & Co. "Square Piano with Aeolian Attachment" 1854. Musical Instruments, accession number 1980.269, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
  37. advertisement Statistical Gazetteer of the State of Virginia...to 1854 Richard Edwards, Richmond, 1855p.434; advertisement Brooklyn Daily Eagle November 5, 1853 p.4
  38. "A List of Awards to United States Contributors at the Great Exhibition of all Nations." New York Times October 29, 1851 p.2
  39. "Premiums awarded...[at] the Twenty-Forth Annual Fair of the American Institute - Piano Fortes and Organs" Transactions of the American Institute of the City of New York for the Year 1851 Charles Van Benthuysen, Albany. 1852. p.647
  40. Premiums awarded by the Managers of the 26th Annual Fair of the American Institute, October 1852 Transactions of the American Institute of the City of New York for the year 1852, Charles Van Benthuysen, Albany 1853 p.497-498
  41. "Musical Instruments" The Seventh Exhibition of the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Association Damrell & Moore and George Coolidge, Boston 1853 p.95 - "exclusive of the Eolian attachment"
  42. advertisement The Boston Directory for the year 1856 George Adams, Boston 1856. advertising department p. 7
    George Adams A Guide Book to Boston and Vicinity Damrell and Moore, Boston, 1853 p.48
  43. Boston Almanac, 1856
  44. "List of Premiums awarded by the managers of the 28th annual fair of the American Institute, October, 1856 - Piano Fortes" Transactions of the American Institute, of the City of New-York, for the year 1856 C. Van Benthuysen, Albany 1857 p.165
  45. Musical Instruments at the Eighth Exhibition Of the Mass. Charitable Mechanic Association Dwight's Journal of Music vol.10, no. 11, Edward L. Balch, Boston, 1857. p.81
  46. advertisement The Boston Directory for the year 1857 George Adams, Boston 1857. advertising department p.8
  47. advertisement Dover Directory for 1859 no.VI J. S. Hayes. Dover, N. H. 1859
  48. "Musical Instruments" The Ninth Exhibition of the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Association Geo. C. Rand & Avery, Boston, 1860 p.117-118
  49. Walter S. Pierce has been Sixty-three Years in Piano Making and Selling. Music Trade Review vol.81 no. 10 (September 5, 1925) p.35
    "The extent of the piano business in the early sixties was also commented upon by Mr. Pierce, who declared that at that period Chickering & Sons, then the largest manufacturers in the country, were turning out twenty pianos a week, Hallet & Davis were making ten, Hallet and Cumston, eight; Timothy Gilbert, six; Vose, four; Lemuel Gilbert, later the McPhail Piano Co., three, and Albert W. Ladd, three. These were the leading piano makers in Boston, but there were also others turning out pianos in lesser numbers."
  50. Fulton p.50
  51. Gary Collison "Anti-Slavery, Blacks, and the Boston Elite: Notes on the Reverend Charles Lowell and the West Church" The New England Quarterly vol. 61, No. 3. September 1988, p.419-429; Nancy C. Curtis Black Heritage Sites: An African American Odyssey and Finder's Guide ALA Editions 1996. p.295
  52. Jesse Leonard Rosenberger Through Three Centuries: Colver and Rosenberger Lives and Times, 1620-1922 University of Chicago Press, Chicago. 1922 p.49-50
  53. Justin A. Smith Memoir of Rev. Nathaniel Colver, D. D. Durkee and Foxcroft, Boston, 1873 p.130-132
  54. Margaret Lamberts Bendroth Fundamentalists in the City: Conflict and Division in Boston's Churches Oxford University Press, 2005. p.103
  55. Debra Gold Hansen "Women in the Female Anti-Slavery Society" Strained Sisterhood: Gender and Class in the Boston Female Anti-Slavery Society University of Massachusetts Press, 1993 p.84-85
  56. "Tremont Temple" The Boston Directory for the year 1851. George Adams, Boston 1851 appendix p.68
  57. 1 2 3 4 James Pike, ed. History of Churches of Boston Ecclesia Publishing Co., Boston 1883 p.49-52
  58. "Destruction of Tremont Temple, Boston, by Fire" New York Times April 1, 1852. p.1
  59. "The New Tremont Temple" [from The Traveller] Dwight's Journal of Music vol.2, no. 21, 22, February 1853. p.162, p.172
  60. "Tremont Temple Burned" New York Times August 15, 1879 p.1
  61. "Tremont Temple" King's Handbook of Boston fourth edition. Moses King, Cambridge Mass. 1881 p.221-222
  62. The Weekly Underwriter vol. 48, The Underwriter Printing & Publishing Co., New York, 1893. p.221-222
  63. The Baptist Magazine for 1842 vol. 34, Houlston and Stoneman, London. 1842. p.537
  64. William Goodell Slavery and Anti-Slavery; a History of the Great Struggle in Both Hemispheres William Goodell, New York 1853 p.498-499
  65. Fulton, p.120
  66. Edmund F. Merriam A History of American Baptist Missions American Baptist Publication Society, Philadelphia. 1900. p.91
  67. Fulton, p.123
  68. Goodell p.500-504