- Laurence Libin
(b Randolph, VT, June 14, 1820; d Wheaton, IL, May 18, 1876). Inventor, and brother of the organ builder William Nutting Jr. He is credited with having invented the Aeolodeon, a hybrid piano and reed organ described as an improvement on an English instrument that combined ‘the various powers of the piano, melodeon, seraphine & etc’ and manufactured by Hovey & Bachelder and by Grovesteen & Truslow. He reportedly first worked in space provided by an uncle who operated a cabinet factory in Brattleboro, Vermont. About 1845 he moved west, and while living in Romeo, Michigan, he patented improvements to the free reed assembly and sounding board of organ-pianos (US patent no.5438, 8 Feb 1848)—his so-called Aeolicon, perhaps the same as the Aeolodeon; it was said to have a sweeter and less nasal tone than other small reed organs of the melodeon kind. Later he moved to Hudson, Ohio, but returned about ...