This is a blog about music, photography, history, and culture.
These are photographs from my collection that tell a story about lost time and forgotten music.

Mike Brubaker
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The Morcan Gornet Band

17 July 2015

In the old days, sign writers didn't have spell check.
Apparently neither did the musicians of the Morcan Gornet Band,
who played in a cornet band in Morgan, MN.

Maybe no one cared about correct spelling in this town.
The postcard was sent from Morgan, MN on Oct. 3, 1908
to Miss Clara Krienke, Janesville, Minn.

Hallo Clara
how are you
geting a long I did
not hear from you
so long and Eda
is ofly slow in
wrighting dis time
I wish she wood not
be so slow and I
had bade lock
yestarday so I hope
to hear from you soon
from Minna, E. H.

In the background the building with the steep stairs has an unusually high and octagonal foundation, and the trees nearby are planted in a row. So I think the 15 musicians of the Morcan Gornet Morgan Cornet Band have assembled for the photographer behind a band stand in their city park. I was unable to find many references to this band, except for a note that they once serenaded a newly married couple from Morgan in 1898. In the 1900s, there were other cornet bands with the name Morgan that played in Texas, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, and Maryland. Perhaps that explains this band's unusual spelling. Or maybe not.

Morgan, Minnesota is a town in Redwood County, southwest of Minneapolis, about halfway between Redwood Falls and Sleepy Eye. It was established in 1878 and today has a population of about 900. Somehow it missed getting one of Minnesota's 1000 lakes.

Morgan, Minnesota

Courtesy of YouTube, here is Newberry's Victorian Cornet Band from Maryland led by Elisa Koehler on solo cornet at the 2010 Vintage Band Festival at Riverside Park in Northfield, MN. The tune seems an appropriate one for this week in celebration of Bastille Day on July 14. But how would the boys from Morgan, MN spell La Marseillaise?

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This is my contribution to Sepia Saturday
where pigs wish they could fly.


La Nightingail said...

I guess my question would be - why is it called a 'cornet' band rather than just a band when there are several other different instruments in the group? I suppose it's because there are mostly cornets? As always, this is an enjoyable post. :)

Wendy said...

When I studied French in high school, we sang the French national anthem daily. The cornet band caused all those verses to come flooding back. Merci beaucoup ~

Jo Featherston said...

I imagine there would be plenty of beef cattle raised in those counties of Minnesota shown on your map, so you could say your post is not entirely unconnected to butchering matters. Lots of grand old bandstands in parks here, but I've only rarely seen bands playing in them.

Brett Payne said...

Don't you think that the "C" is in fact a "G" with a small cross bar that's not as visible as in the other "G"? I like the spelling used by the author of that postcard, though - it gives a very authentic early 20th C feel to it, somehow.

Jo Featherston said...

Silly me, missed the Morgan connection to the prompt.

Alan Burnett said...

Great post (so what's new!). I particularly love that Google map image you include, it seems to tell us so much about the place. And a subtle connection to the prompt as well.

violet s said...

I am mightily impressed with the 'Morgan' connection!!
I had no idea a cornet could be so popular as to be leading a band.

Barbara Rogers said...

You musical people just don't appreciate what I most loved about this post, the way Miss Mina, E. H. spelled on the post card message. How truly arigenal!

anyjazz said...

You found an item rich in revealing detail. Good sleuthing! I bet you could hear them all over the park!


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