The 1st Brigade Band doesn't just play a concert, it presents a program that combines 1860s brass band music with historical stories and anecdotes, and includes women dressed in period costume. As I sat in the shade, listening to the music and feeling the humidity, it was easy to believe I'd been transported to 1860s Georgia – except I had a bottle of water, and not a mint julep, in my hand.
|Dan Woolpert, emeritus bandmaster, lets Sebastian hold a vintage brass horn.|
|Members of the 1st Brigade playing their vintage brass instruments.|
|Presenters with one of the old flags.|
Jasper didn't play in a regimental band, but his son, my great-grandfather G. Oliver Riggs, played in the 55th (51st) Iowa Regimental Band when it traveled to the South in November 1906 to dedicate the Iowa memorials at the battlefields of Shiloh, Vicksburg, Chattanooga, Chickamauga, and Andersonville.
We are planning to retrace the steps of Jasper and G. Oliver in October when we visit the Shiloh National Military Park and the Vicksburg National Military Park during our family vacation. We won't make it to Georgia, but we'll be sure to put the song on the iPod in honor of Sherman.
He probably wouldn't be amused.