The carousel wheels are made of
wood and must roll in a water-filled track to minimize wood shrinkage
and prevent irreparable damage.
Each quadrant of the platform features
a gondola preceded by two groups of three horses, for a total of
four gondolas and 24 horses.
The carousel was named Le Galopant because of the galloping motion
of the horses and gondolas, which are controlled by an ingenious
The first gondola is unique, representing a winged angel
holding reins. The second possesses a canopy supported by nymphs
The third features a figurehead of a woman holding a torch. The fourth
gondola has a canopy that sits atop posts decorated with arabesques.
wooden horses are made of a number of parts precisely assembled
with wooden pegs and rabbit glue.
All the decorative elements were
produced in Belgium by a sculptor named Jules Moulinas.
The organ, designed to be a miniature
orchestra, is mounted on its original carriage. Formerly, the engine
supplied the power required to run a leather bellows, which in
turn operated its own mechanism, various instruments, and wooden
This organ read music from perforated paperboard sheets connected
end-to-end with a special adhesive. One song required 48 sheets.
The Galopant organ is worthy of
being called an orchestrion—the
name sometimes given to this type of musical instrument—because
its 89 touch keys, which activated 327 flutes, two drums, one
cymbal, and two clappers, produced an orchestra-like sound.
Today, the music played is the same as that on the perforated
paperboard sheets used in 1967. It is, however, recorded, because
the organ was not restored due to the immense complexity of this