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The Nielsen Family Piano!

Brigham Larson Pianos

The piano I grew up with in my home on a farm in north-central Iowa was manufactured by Ivers & Pond in Boston. It was given to my grandparents, Charles David Gleim and Amy Lawrence Himes by Amy’s parents, Marshall Llewellyn Himes and Lavilla Dormer Lawrence when Amy and Charles were married in 1912. I do not know the history of the piano before this, or whether it was new or used at the time that it was gifted to Amy and Charles. Their daughter (my mom, Mary Verna Gleim) learned to play on this piano while growing up in Arlington, Iowa. My mom brought the piano to the farm when she was married in 1951 to Lawrence Marius Nielsen, and she played it often. My mom thought everyone should learn to play the piano, so my two brothers and I took piano lessons, and practiced on this piano. I am the only one of us three boys that continued to play after taking lessons, and I have loved the piano all of my life. When I was in Junior High School, I developed stomach problems, for which no cause could be determined. The doctors just attributed it to “nervous stomach,” and I would be sick almost every afternoon. Perhaps it was related to nervousness, for playing the piano helped to relieve the symptoms somewhat. In fact, sitting down at this piano was the first thing I did when getting back home from school everyday, sometimes not even waiting to take off my coat before sitting down to play a song or two. My brothers and I played band instruments in school, and we had many fun evenings as a family playing solos, duets, and trios on our instruments with our mom accompanying us on this piano. I married in 1983, and my mom said I should have the piano. My older brother moved the piano from Iowa to where I was living in northeast Colorado, but he didn’t take much care in moving the piano in the back of a pickup truck. During the move, the tarp covering the piano loosened and several grommets banged against the piano and did some surface damage to the finish in places, and the piano got rained on. In any case, it survived the move, and it was good to have access to my old friend again, and to be able to play it often. My wife taught all eight of our children to play on this piano. She also gave lessons on this piano to many children in our community in northeast Colorado. Three of our children also gave lessons to others on this piano. Two of our daughters went on to study music at BYU, with Amy getting a Bachelors of Music degree in Organ Performance and Anna getting both Bachelors and Masters of Music degrees in piano performance. Both now give piano lessons, with Anna teaching full time in her studio of over 60 students. The Ivers & Pond piano now resides with our son, Gordon, at his home in Cedar Hills. Three of his five children are now taking piano lessons from my wife, and doing their daily practicing on this piano. The members of my family have a very strong love for this piano and for the joy it has brought to all of us.

  • YEAR 1910-1920
  • MAKE An Heirloom Piano's Journey: From Iowa Farm to Family Legacy of Musical Mastery
  • FINISH Wood Finish
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