Leandro Garcimartín might possibly be considered the last great classic organ builder who worked in the middle of the Peninsula at the end of the 18th century and the beginning of the 19th. He was a direct descendent of the Ortega dynasty (Francisco, Tadeo, Juan de Inés, etc.) a nephew of Tomás de Inés Ortega (who worked side by side with Julián de la Orden on the magnificent Cathedral organs in Málaga. He was also married to one of José Verdalongas daugthers. His work reflects the heritage of all these schools and builders.
However, we think he was also open to considerable influence as organ curator in the Chapel of Madrids Royal Palace, where he also had a chance to study the Jordi Bosch instrument there and may even have had chance to meet and speak to the builder himself. The organ in Ávila indeed, has a wind system doubtless inspired by the organ in the Royal Palace. We can see this in both technical details as well as in decorative features such as the dragons head.
The organ at the Cathedral in Ávila was in use for almost a century without undergoing any major repair work. Displacing the mechanic, the pitch was raised without having to shorten the pipes.
In 1924, the en chamade reed pipes were removed; these have been reconstructed. A full restoration of this organ not only meant an enormous effort both financially and humanly, but onceall this was finally done, a long-forgotten and, up to that time, almost unknown instrument came to light.
While we were taking the instrument apart, a letter was found, hidden between the grooved-blocks on the Great Organ, and completely inaccessible to anyone but the workshop staff whose job it was to completely dismantle the organ before restoration work began.The document, dated 1828, contains personal and professional details about the organ builders who worked on the instrument; this also included some of the musicians who worked at the Cathedral.