IOWA STATE Band History Album - Page A

The earliest recorded evidence of a concert band at Iowa State was in 1881
when a newspaper article discussed the reorganization of the “College Band.”


The following account is from the 1897 History and Reminiscences of ISC:

     In 1882, on the 8th of April at 6:15 P.M., a terrific cyclone visited the college grounds, destroying much property and injuring several persons.  After completely demolishing the house occupied by Mr. and Mrs. McCarthy, about three-fourths of a mile south from the college, and injuring them quite severely, it thn removed a few of the chimneys on the president's new house and entered the college campus from the south side, making sad havoc with all that was before it.  The first that fell victim to its fury was the new bridge southeast of the college.  The apron and floor of the bridge were lifted bodily from their foundations, leaving the framework of the bridge undisturbed, and were carried about eight or ten rods to the hill north of it, where it plowed a deep furrow in the hill side.  South Hall was next visited and partially destroyed by having its walls damaged, windows smashed in, and chimneys removed.  It then seemingly divided, one portion promiscuously tearing up the trees about the lawn, blowing off the chimney to Professor Budd's house, and partially destroying the horticultural barn, while the other portion blew the top and body of the 'bus, which was standing within fifty rods of the college, over into the evergreens together with its passengers numbering not less than ten or twelve.  Mrs. Prof. Bessey received slight injuries in the face, and Mr. Connell had three of his ribs browken, and sustained internal injuries, which left him in a very critical condition.  It next visited the collge, broke up the chapel exercises, smashed a few window lights, destroyed the railing on the south tower, and toppled over a few chimneys.  Then it passed to north Hall, where it joined hands with its fellow and completely ruined the upper part of this large brick building.  The damages sustained by the college property were estimated to be from $25,000 to $30,000.

     After lying six weeks under the care of Dr. Fairchild and that of his home physician, Mr. Connell was carried on a stretcher to the railroad track north of the college, where the train stopped to take him home.  He recovered from a long illness to be a life-long sufferer from the effects of his injuries.

The first noted evidence of a drum major along with a marching band was in 1886.

In 1888, there were many changes in the faculty.  Miss Eva L. Pike, teacher of
instrumental and vocal music, was called a valuable acquisition to the force.

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This image is from the 1890s.
The building behind the Iowa State band is Old Main, where Beardshear is today.


The 1898 Mandolin and Guitar Club

One of the most interesting clubs of the college is the Mandolin and Guitar Club, which meets for practice each Friday evening with Mrs. E. C. Davis, of Boone, Iowa.  The club consists of mandolins, guitars, and banjos.  Mrs. Davis is a very capable instructor of the mandolin, guitar, and banjo, and her pupils are all ardently devoted to her.  She gives private lessons to a large number of I. S. C. students at reasonable rates, and very kindly aids every one who desires her help, in selecting suitable instruments.  The interest shown in this line of work among the students is remarkable, and whenever any of the club appear before an audience with their instruments, they are greeted with much enthusiasm by all present.  (from the 1898 ISC Bomb)

Is the Mandolin and Guitar Club an Iowa State Band?
Perhaps not, but is certainly is a music ensemble using popular instruments of the time.


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1901 ISC Cadet Band

Members of the 1901 ISC Cadet Band
The word Alto doesn't mean alto saxophone, but means altonium, a small baritone in the key of E flat.

1901 Mandolin Club

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(image may be enlarged with a click)

The 1901 Iowa State Mandolin Club

the personnel of the
1901 Mandolin Club


The 1903 ISC Mandolin Club

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