The Physharmonica is from the estate of Friedrich Wieck. It was built in Vienna around 1825, probably by Joseph Carl Fuchs (1789–1832). Clara Wieck received a similar Physharmonica, by Fuchs (1789-1832) on the 10th of March 1828 as an improvisation and travel instrument. This kind of instrument is a forerunner of the later harmonium or reed organ. The wind is generated by the left pedal; the volume can be reduced during playing by opening a wind-release vent with the right pedal. A brass knob on the left side of the keyboard provides the same function. Marie Wieck sold the instrument to the Schumann collector Alfred Wiede in Zwickau-Weißenborn (1864–1925); he then made a gift of it to the Zwickau Schumann Museum on the 21st of April 1917.
The audio sample is a part of Friedrich Wieck’s Notturno for physharmonica and piano (1831) played by Eckart Sellheim on the physharmonica and Dian Baker on the Clara Wieck grand piano on the occasion of a concert at the Robert Schumann House on June 11, 2007.