***** CORPS HISTORY – 1958 *****
May 17, – Tulip Festival, Washington Park, Albany, N.Y.
This was our first appearance in the Tulip Festival. A new fifer was Bill Kemp. This was the first time for such tunes as In an Old Dutch Garden, and When You Wore A Tulip, which are now reserved exclusively for this annual appearance. The corps was without Theresa McLean, who was expecting a child soon. The corps’ part was to march out to the center of the field and play tunes on the platform, and then line up on both sides of the passage way and play for the girls in the court as they were escorted to the stand. We also played immediately following the crowning of Jane Armstrong, as Tulip Queen of 1958. Members included: the Webb brothers, Bob Barned, Bob Mulligan, Carl VanHoesan, Ray Hauley, Bob McLean, and Jack Noll.
May 30, – Memorial Day Parade, Delmar, N.Y.
This parade was attended by fifers Barned, Kemp, VanHoesan, Mulligan, Hauley, and Dave Weinstock (his first appearance). Drummers were: Bob McLean, Bill Webb, Johnny (Jack) Noll, and a new bass drummer, Frank Oswein. Again, as in ‘57, we played at Servicemen’s Park after the parade, sharing the spotlight with the Yankee Doodle Band. We then walked over to the Elsmere Fire Hall, where sandwiches, soft drinks, and beer were being served to all paraders. We all ate plenty, and also relaxed, because we still had to march in another parade. A little after 12 noon, we all piled into the cars of Barned, McLean, and the Webb Brothers, and headed for Rensselaer for a firemen’s parade at 2:00 pm. After waiting at Kenwood Mills, we entered the parade playing tunes similar to those played in the morning. Mrs. McLean was still not back with the corps, but her sister was up from N.Y.C. to watch Robin (now 5 years old). Refreshments at the end of the parade hit the spot.
July , – Firemen’s Convention Parade, Rotterdam, N.Y.
This marked the first time for the corps to travel by bus with the firemen and ladies auxiliary. The bus was parked at the fairgrounds, where the parade was to end. From here we traveled to downtown Rotterdam, where we were to line up and enter the parade. While waiting, Ray Hauley and Bill Kemp visited a local tavern and ordered a pizza. By the time they finished, the corps was stepping off, so the boys had to make it on the run. The day was typical of convention parades, hot and humid. Paraders welcomed the sight of refreshment stands as they entered the fairgrounds, and many cooled off with a few beers. Unfortunately, heat and beer can cause trouble, and so the rescue squads were kept busy reviving those suffering from heat exhaustion,. The bus ride home was quite noisy, as everyone joined in with the singing of folk songs. The only new marcher was Willie Hamlin, a fireman, who carried a flag in the color guard.
July , – Firemen’s Parade, Albany, N.Y.
This parade was attended by fifers: Mrs. McLean, Bob Barned, Bill Kemp, Dave Weinstock, Bob Mulligan, Ray Hauley, Drummers included: Bob McLean, Bill Webb, Jack Noll, Frank Oswein and Bob Webb ~ drum major. After arriving approximately on time, we waited four hours before wo could step off. More than one cigarette vas Smoked that day. Bill Kemp finally had to call his mother and ask her to deliver his newspapers. The parade finally started taking us “through the heart of
Albany and ending by the Hudson River, where food was served. Claudia Everingham, Robin’s twirling instructor, led the corps. At the end of the parade, Allen Smyth joined the corps and twirled with Claudia. The corps has been friendly with AI, and he has helped the corps out acting as drum major and also Robin’s instructor.
July , – Firemen’s Convention, Cambridge, N.Y.
The trip north was accomplished thanks to drivers: Bob McLean, Mr. Barned, and the Webb brothers. After the parade, we stayed at the fairgrounds, where we got sandwiches, pop, and beer. The afternoon was highlighted by individual performances of each drum corps, and awards to the best appearing corps in the parade. The drunks that were walking around were made to carry ice. This was a show in itself. The drunks that weren’t carrying ice were even funnier, however, as they went right out on the field and followed the drum corps, mimicking many of the musicians. This was funny until a majorette was carried off as a souvenir. The parade in the evening was also very successful and unique.
July , – Firemen’s Parade, Ravena, N. Y.
Drivers for this parade included Bob McLean, the Webb brothers, and Bob Mulligan. After the parade, we were able to get refreshments at the various stands and to enjoy the festivities at the firemen’s fair. Some members also enjoyed themselves by driving Bob Mulligan’s car around the parking lot. (one of them was not Mr. Mulligan, however}. The only other memorable event was the meeting of a man who looked just like Bill Cullen of television’s “The Price is Right.” He had a few too many beers though, and so he wasn’t too sure who he was. There were also several midgets running around, and they proved to be real characters doing all sorts of crazy things.
August , – Firemen’s Parade, Stoney Creek, N.Y.
This trip was made thanks to the following, Bob McLean, Bob Mulligan, Mrs. Weinstock and Jay Solomon. Although we left early for this parade, we arrived about on time due to the fact that some of the drivers took a wrong turn near Lake Luzern (Route 9-J). Everyone arrived at different times. We changed into our
uniforms upstairs in the firehouse. We then marched up the road to a cutoff by a bridge, where we waited for the paraders to pass so we could fall in. After the parade, there were refreshments and awards given out. We received a trophy for traveling the longest distance.
August 16, – Bennington Battle Day, Bennington, Vt.
The drivers were: Mr. McLean, Mr. Barned, and Mrs. Weinstock. Before we left, Mr. McLean had the corps fall-in by the Delmar fire hall and presented Ray Hauley with corporal stripes. The trip over and the parade itself went quite smoothly. At the fairgrounds, a drum corps competition was being staged. The only other ancient fife and drum corps was Mattatuck Drum Band from Waterbury, Connecticut, and they managed to take a third place. Before the competition, several of us jammed it up with some of Mattatuck’s members by the stands. We were also able to talk with such men as James B. Williams and Michael J. Dailey. Playing members were: Theresa McLean, Bob Barned, Ray Hauley, Bill Kemp, Bob Mulligan, and Dave Weinstock on the fife. Drummers were Bob McLean, Bill Webb, and Jack Noll. Bob Webb was drum major, and Robin supplied the twirling talent.
August. , – Performance, Fort Wm. Henry, Lake George, N.Y.
As in the previous year’s appearance, the corps marched around the fort, and inside in order to attract tourists, and add color and splendor to the fort. Families were once again invited for a picnic under the trees adjacent to the fort. There seemed to be more exploring of the fort this year and Mr. McLean was constantly having difficulty rounding everyone up for our scheduled appearances, especially Bill Kemp and Ray Hauley. Others attending included. the entire McLean family including their young son Shawn, Bob and Sheila Mulligan, the Barned family, Bill Webb and his mother, Bob Webb and family, Dave Weinstock, his mother and sister, and Jack Noll.
September , – Chatham Fair, Chatham, N.Y.
It was at this parade that we had quite the uniform fiasco. Ray Hauley forgot his red colonial jacket. To alleviate this problem, Jack Noll ended up shedding his jacket, with the hope that the base drum would make him less conspicuous. After the parade, we got refreshments at the various stands and also were able to take rides and play games of chance featured in the midway. There was a man present at the fair who could play the fife. He and Mrs. McLean ran through several tunes including Willie Weaver and Old Dan Tucker (later to become corps pieces). Theresa’ s father, Mr. Banks was also up from New York City and present at the fair.
September , – Fort Stanwix Day, Rome, N. Y.
The corps traveled west to participate in the festivities at Rome. It was while traveling there that we got separated on the N.Y.S. Thruway. Mr. McLean had to stop in the break down lane to fix something on his car. Meanwhile the Webbs and the Barneds continued. When they got to the exit, they waited for McLean to catch up. Unfortunately, Bob turned off at an earlier exit, and reached Rome while the others were still waiting at the exit. We were supposed to go on at 8:00 pm., however, for awhile it looked like the McLeans and Ray Hauley would have to go out alone. Eventually the others arrived thankfully. They were: Bob Barned, Bill Kemp, Dave Weinstock, Jack Noll, Bill and Bob Webb and their friend, John Rankin who marched in the color guard with Will Hamlin and Don Decker. After a fast change into our uniforms at a nearby school, we marched out to the track, where the Battle of Fort Stanwix was already being staged before a large audience seated in the bleachers around the track. Then out of the smoke of battle, our corps marched smartly toward the crowd to the tunes of Yankee Doodle, Road to Boston, Blue Bells of Scotland, and others. From the response, it was reasonable to assume that we had caught the public’s fancy. It was really gratifying to hear the applause ring in our ears for several minutes after the completion of the routine. After this, there was an excellent display of fireworks, and than we left Rome and traveled back to Fort Klock, where the Muzzle Loaders graciously volunteered to put us up for the night. Unfortunately, it turned out that Professor Ayres’ house was the only place available. It hardly seemed likely that one house was big enough for the entire corps. As it turned out, we all slept there, even if Kemp had to contend with Barney pushing him around most of the night as they slept. Bill also managed to create a hole in his pillow which filled the room and mouths with feathers. The rest of us were less unfortunate and all were grateful to the Ayres for their hospitality. In the morning, Mrs. Ayres made breakfast for us, while prof. Ayres spun a few yarns and discussed progress on Fort Klock and the upcoming pageant.
We then went over to the fort and prepared for the annual pageant to be held later in the month. We played a few tunes by the fort for the Muzzle Loaders, and then said good-by.
The following week we were back with the same members with the exception of Rankin and Hamlin. The pageant was conducted about the same as the year before with the “big feast” once again being the highlight, even though Kemp spent most of his time complaining about the flies. Another big attraction was the siege of the fort, where a fake door was knocked out and a trick roof was destroyed. With arrows and cannon balls flying around, the fort really portrayed a battle scene, and all were urged to stay clear (we did!!). One member who was unable to attend this event was Carl VanHoesan, who was serving a two year hitch in the U.S. Navy.
September 19, – Hudson Champlain Dinner, Albany, N.Y.
This program occurred on a Friday night, and was basically concerned with the planning of the “Year of History” coming up in 1959, celebrating the discovery of the Hudson River. Such dignitaries as Mayor Corning of Albany were present. It was Robin who took the spotlight and delighted the celebrated guests. An attempt was made to to get her to twirl on the table by the mayor, however she became frightened, so the issue wasn’t pressed any further. She did manage to get her picture in the Times Union though. After playing several tunes for the folks in the lush downstairs dining room of the Sheraton Ten Eyck Hotel, we went up stairs to their restaurant, where we received a free dinner. Members included the McLeans, Bob Barned, Dave Weinstock, Ray Hauley, Bob Mulligan, and Jack Noll.
November 1, – Competition, Yonkers, N.Y.
This was the corps’ first competition. We left early Saturday morning in cars belonging to: Bob McLean, the Webb brothers, and Bob Mulligan. We traveled on the new Taconic State Parkway, which was a new and enjoyable experience for some of us. The competition was held indoors that evening in the armory. It consisted of modern fife and drum corps, combination fife, drum, and bugle corps, and ancient corps, however the only other ancient corps was St. Benedicts, later to be known as the N.Y. Regimentals. Although this corps had superior music, we still won two first place trophies; one for “Best Appearance,” and the other for “Traveling the Longest Distance.” After 30 some corps played (many of which were recorded by Mr. McLean), we went to the basement, where we were able to play tunes with, listed to, and record the music of John McDonough, leader of the Regimentals. This competition lifted the spirits of our members, as it showed that our playing was improving and that others in the state were also interested in this hobby. Members included: Bob Webb, our drum major; and Robin, our majorette. Fifers were: Theresa McLean, Bob Barned, Bob Mulligan, Ray Hauley, and Dave Weinstock. Drummers were: Bob McLean, Bill Webb, and Jack Noll. Recruits attending included: Pete Ricky, and Don Decker.
November 15, – Competition, Waterbury, Connecticut
For many this was our first trip to this state. The following were drivers: Bob McLean, Bob Webb, Bill Webb, and Bob Mulligan. Those competing included: drum major, Bob Webb, majorette, Robin, fifers: Mrs. McLean, Bob Barned, Bob Mulligan, Ray Hauley, Dave Weinstock and drummers, Bob McLean, Bill Webb, and Jack Noll. Bob Webb won a trophy for “Best Appearing”, as did the entire corps. We won still another trophy for “Traveling the Longest Distance.” We could have taken still another trophy for playing, however, 20 points were sliced from our score of 92% for changing from 2/4 tunes to 6/8 pieces. This rule was not in effect in New York State. This trip, like the previous competition excursion, lifted our spirits and offered us experiences which will never be forgotten. Although we were separated a couple of times in the town while looking for a spot to eat, we still think of this as perhaps the “event of the Year”. Every member had a weekend full of fun and free of cost. That night we stayed in one of Waterbury’s largest hotels.
December , – Corps Christmas Party, Delmar Fire Hall.
This was the first year for a party and it proved to be a good but expensive one. It was catered by professionals, and thus we had not only good food, but a nicely decorated hall in which to eat it. Mr. McLean was then working as an art director for Channel 10, and was able to bring movies and cartoons in from the station. Since there were many younger brothers and sisters of members present, this was the big event of the afternoon. The corps also entertained the group for awhile before the party ended.