A Man Consumed By Music

Looking back at Edgerton history and the businesses that line our Main Street, our readers will perhaps recall Adrian Hartog, the former owner of the Hartog Piano and Organ Company.

In 1972, the Edgerton Enterprise called this business the “largest music house in three states – Minnesota, Iowa, and South Dakota. Adrian Hartog was a man consumed by music. In addition to managing the store, he was well known as an organist and composer.

Adrian was born November 24, 1899 at Orange City, Iowa, to Samuel and Pieternella (Oranje) Hartog. Adrian moved to Edgerton in 1914 with his family, including five sisters: Marie (Samuel) Fey, Nellie (John) Wiersma, Ella (Steve) Jasper, Jacoba (Dr. Paul) Wezeman, and Johanna (Jerry) Brink.

In 1920, Adrian married Maime Huisken. Maime was the daughter of Ben and Antje Huisken. Maime’s grandfather was Wubbe Ammermann, who emigrated to the United States with his wife, Trentje, and family. Wubbe was an organist who would wake his family by playing the organ each morning. (We wrote about the Ammermann’s and their family organ in our August 23, 2017 Edgerton Enterprise).

Adrian and Maime adopted two children, Stanton Eldridge and Owen Howard. The Hartog family lived in the apartments above the Huisken store and later at 110 Center Street for many years. Stan recalls having to practice organ while other kids were outside on a vacant lot playing baseball. Later, the Hartogs built a new house on that vacant lot, which is now owned by First CRC.

Adrian and his family were members of First Christian Reformed Church, where Adrian was the organist for 48 years. Celia Van Essen was an organist during some of the years that Adrian was the head organist at First CRC. She recalls that he was a fine musician and was well known, even as far away as Minneapolis.

Besides playing for regular worship services, he played for countless programs, weddings, and funerals. He had given hundreds of organ recitals and had studied extensively under some of the world’s leading organists, including Marcel Dupre of Paris, France.

Many times when Adrian sold a new organ to a church he would offer to attend the dedication ceremony and would play the new organ for the congregation.

For the complete article, please see the November 29th edition of the Edgerton Enterprise. If you do not currently receive the Enterprise, CLICK HERE for information on how to subscribe!

Adrian Hartog at the organ in First Christian Reformed Church.

Adrian Hartog composed four numbers for the Centennial Edition of the Psalter Hymnal.

Adrian Hartog and his wife Maime Huisken, who died from diabetes complications in 1956.

Marcel Dupre of Paris, France, was one of Adrian’s organ instructors. He autographed this photo of himself for Adrian, signing it “To my dear pupil, Adrian Hartog.”

Adrian Hartog married Johanna (Mesman) Holleman in 1959.