Section  One

Page  8

Many   Bands  Have  Marched  By  "Hill"


69combnd.jpg (21618 bytes) NO GIRLS, JUST BOYS - This is one of the earlier bands of
Grove of the mid-1930's. The director was Mr. Charles G.
HIS FIRST YEAR - Here is Mr. Crosswy with his first set of
majorettes and his first of many trophies.

(Left to right: Shirley Carter, Buzzy Clifford, Mr. Crosswy, Gene Abernathy, Drum Major and  Becky Blanton)
69comxwy.jpg (26250 bytes)


   One of the major attractions
of Grove's versatile curriculum
was the field of music. Grove's
music department had its
beginning as the greatly
celebrated Grove Music Club. Its
activities included singing in
various school assemblies and
civic club performances. There
seemed to be a difficulty in
keeping an instructor for this
club. Perhaps the cause lies in
the fact that, for the most part,
they were unmarried ladies.
Their careers at Grove were
usually ended after a year of
teaching. In 1912, Miss Laura
Shouse gave instructions for a
period of one year. In 1919, the
club blossomed forth under the
guidance of Miss Melbe DeFord.
The following year, 1920, Miss
Nancy Karns assumed the
burden of Grove's education in
culture. 1921 found Mrs. J. H.
Bayesr, wife of Grove's principal
for that year, presiding as
instructor of the club.
   In 1928 the music
department underwent a drastic
change. Under the supervision of
Mr. Pryor, the first school band
was organized.
   In 1929, the second year of
its existence, the band, under
the direction of Mr. C. E. Doran,
began to take an active part in
community life. The all-male
band performed during the
half-time at football games, just
as today. They became the
proud owners of their first
uniforms. These uniforms, the
latest in band wear, were the
traditional blue with a cream
stripe down the leg and a large
blue cape sporting a white "P"
insignia. One of the main events
on the band's agenda was
performing at the annual county
fair. Unlike today, the band
could receive payment forvarious performances. The boys used this income to pay for their uniforms, instruments, and meals on band trips. They practiced during the school day, in addition to two hour practices held two nights a week in the lunch room of Lee School. A result of this untiring effort was shown when the small thirty-two piece band motored to their compete against bands of more than one hundred pieces and returned with a second place
ribbon. As a side activity, the
people of Paris were entertained
in the summer by two-hour
concerts given each Saturday
night from a large bandstand
located on the courthouse lawn.          Much can be said of these
thirty-two charter members. Out
of this number, two ten piece
dance bands were organized,
twelve attended college on
scholarship awarded for band
merits, and eighteen went on
   After Mr. Doran left Paris,
Mr. Albert I. Cina took over the
position of band director.
Following his resignation, Mr.
Bonnie Walker, a graduate of
Murray State Teacher's College
was elected by the Band Parents
Club. On October 24, 1938, the
City Board of Education
assumed control over the band
and the director was made a
member of the faculty of the
city schools.
   In 1939, John Travis, a senior
at Murray State, became band
director on a temporary basis
until 1940, when Mr. T. J.
Byrns, a graduate of Memphis
State Teacher's College, took
over the position. Shortly
thereafter, World War II began
and Mr. Byrans was called into
the service and there was no
full-time band director in Paris
until 1948.

   A young man named William
F. Crosswy, a senior at Murray
State Teacher's College, was
employed by the City Board of
Education. Mr. Crosswy, who
was in his last quarter of
schooling at Murray State, came
to Paris two afternoons and one
morning each week until the
first of 1948. At that time he
took the band full time.
   At that time the band
inventory consisted of about ten
instruments, of which only two
were playable, a full set of
uniforms that had to be rounded
up from former band members
and incomplete arrangements of
music that had been kept by
former band members.
   With only two boys who were
in the old band, and thirty-three
beginners, Mr. Crosswy set about
the task of making the Paris
School Band one of the best
organizations in West Tennessee.
   The band continued to
prosper as they acquired new
instruments and uniforms.
Traditions began to form, such
as marching at all football
games, two concert programs,
and the annual barbeque supper.
   In 1955, 1956, 1957, and
1958 the Paris School Band was
selected for presentation in the
"First Chair of America," the
National Yearbook of
outstanding high school bands.
   In 1958 the band was moved
to the Grove Junior High where
no facilities had been made for
it. It practiced in the auditorium
and the gymnasium. This was
unsatisfactory as it disturbed
classes and damaged instruments
because of improper storage.

Continued Below:


Finally the basement of Cavitt
Hall was cleared out and made
ready for the band. They ended
up right where they had started
31 years before.

   In 1960, the Grove Dance Band was formed. Fourteen
players were drawn from the
Grove High School Band and
used arrangements similar to the
"big band" styles of the '40's.
   In 1962, the band got brand
new uniforms in the style of the
West Point Cadets. The entire
town was enthusiastic as the
band made its first appearance in
the new uniforms at

   In 1964 also, me number of
members in the band reached
100. The band became known to
all football fans as the "Grove
High School Blue Devil Marching
100 Band."
   On October 9, 1965, the
Grove Band accepted an
invitation to march in the 1966
"Parade of Princesses" of the
National Cherry Blossom
Festival in Washington, D. C.
A tremendous drive got under way
immediately to raise a total sum
of over $10,000.

   Besides the traditional
performances, the band has long
participated in the Strawberry
Festival, Banana Festival, UTM
Homecoming and Band Day
Activities, and the Solo-Ensemble

Contest. In addition to these the band
has Quad-State Music Festival and
has participated in the State
Band Contest with the Stage Band.


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