Donner German
Storm Pedal English
Thunder Pedal English
Orage French
Effet[s] d'Orage French
Tonnerre French
Imitacion de Tempestad Spanish
Sturm German

Wedgwood lists these names with the following description:

The Storm Pedal probably originated in the old Drum Pedal and the German Hummel. As made by Cavaillé-Coll it was a pedal which, on depression, drew down successively six or seven notes from the bottom of the pedal board upwards. The effet, as may well be imagined, is realistic -- particularly when the 32 ft. reed is drawn. As Mr. Robertson remarks, the contrivance is rather superfluous, since a really imposing effect can be got by sitting on the keys! Manchester Town Hall; Sheffield Albert Hall; Carmelite Church, Kensington (formerly), (all by Cavaillé-Coll); Seville Cathedral (Qauilino Amézua, 1903).

Sumner lists Donner as simply “a thunder effect in German organs, made by playing some of the large bass pipes together”.


Osiris contains eight examples of Orage, seven example of Effet[s] d'Orage, two examples each of Donner and Tonnerre, and one example each of Thunder Pedal and Storm Pedal.

No examples of the names Sturm or Imitacion de Tempestad are known. Contributions welcome.

Donner, Pedal; St. Reinoldi, Dortmund, Germany; Walcker 1909 (destroyed).

Donner; Erecting Hall, Laukhuff Organ Builder, Weikersheim, Germany; Moller 1947.

Storm Pedal; City Hall, Glasgow, Scotland; Gray & Davison 1853.

Effets d'Orage; Gounod residence, Paris, France; Cavaillé-Coll 1879.

Tonnerre; St. Antoine des Qinze-Vingts, Paris, France; Cavaille-Coll 1895

Tonnerre; St. Eustache, Paris, France; Merklin 1876-79.

Thunder pedals; First (Old South) Presbyterian Church, Newburyport, Massachusetts, USA; Hook 1966. (These pedals operate two extra pipes, A# and B below low C, of the Double Open Diapason 16'.)


Sumner[1]: Donner. Wedgwood[1]: Storm Pedal.
Copyright © 1999 Edward L. Stauff, all rights reserved.
Donner.html - Last updated 13 March 2002.
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