Monday, July 25, 2011
While the fabric of the nation was being torn apart, a small band of tattered Wayne County musicians played music to inspire the Union to keep intact.
Germantown's "Silver Coronet Band" joined Company K of the 12th Regiment of Indiana Infantry after resolving July 28, 1862, to spread cheer and inspire confidence to Northern soldiers by playing patriotic music.
Sadly, within days of enlisting, the ragtag band -- with an array of inadequately armed and ill-trained Hoosier troops -- was in the middle of a battle that was an overwhelming victory for the South and an embarrassing defeat for the North. They were captured at the Battle of Richmond, Ky., and their instruments were confiscated.
The fight took place Aug. 29-30, 1862, and was the most overwhelming victory by one side over the other of the entire Civil War. The battle historically has been overshadowed by the Battle of Second Bull Run, or Manassas, that took place about the same time.
The North suffered 5,353 casualties and the South had 451 losses. The imprisoned Germantown musicians lived off raw corn, and suffered the same privation as those who had taken up arms. Eventually they were exchanged and rejoined their regiment at home, but now they had no musical instruments.
Undaunted, the Germantown "band boys" vowed to go on, and ultimately were able to secure new instruments. Again they entered the fray, and played around campfires and on the march, and were often exposed to danger because in taking the lead, they were easy targets.
These ragtag men from Wayne County wore baggy trousers. Their unshaved faces and lean look made them bedraggled. Their whiskers caused them to appear -- as one writer put it -- like "Russian Cossacks."
A band member wrote, "The inspirational duties we performed belied our ruffian appearance. Everyone that could raise whiskers did so, and we became adorned with full facial decorations for our type of service, as we were a handsome lot who played as our strength would permit, with quite unrestrained enthusiasm."
Friday, July 8, 2011
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Here's a print ad by the N.H. White Co. promoting their #1240B 'King Symphony Recording Bell-Front model' using a likeness of Mr. William Bell of the New York Philharmonic (formerly with the Cincinnati Symphony and the NBC Symphony).
The horns were manufactured by the N.H. White Co. in Bb & Eb models from $350.00 - $400.00