The Jackson Township Community Band will perform two concerts honoring America’s military veterans on Monday.
The performances will be at 10:15 a.m. in the rotunda of the Clay County Courthouse during the annual Veterans Day program. Clay County veterans groups will also be on hand with speakers and a color guard.
For years, the community band has visited local schools on Veterans Day. Greencastle Middle School, Staunton and Van Buren schools have received such concerts. This year, the community band will play at Forest Park Elementary School at the invitation of Principal Dustin Jorgensen, who plays trombone in both the community band and the Brazil Concert Band. The school concert will take place at 1 p.m.
As word got out about the Armistice on Nov. 11, 1918, ending The Great War (later renamed World War I), Clay Countians gathered at the courthouse in Brazil to celebrate the German surrender which officially went into effect “on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month.”
The Jackson Township Community Band had been organized three years earlier and its members assembled with musicians from the Brazil Concert Band to play patriotic music including “Over There!” by George M. Cohan, and marches by Fred Jewell, Karl L. King, Henry Fillmore and Lt. John Philip Sousa, who took leave of his own band to serve the U.S. Navy as a bandmaster during the war.
The Veterans Day program is the community band’s oldest continuous performance. In 1954, Armistice Day was changed to Veterans Day due to World War II and the Korean War. Today, Nov. 11 honors veterans throughout American history.
During its nearly 100 years, the community band also has performed throughout the United States.
Matthew S. Huber directs the band.