Glens Falls music history — 5-year-old ‘prodigy’

Here is a fun 19th century anecdote about the result of exposing a child to music early in life:

“South Glens Falls has an infant prodigy in the person of Eddie, the five-year-old son of Eugene Race,” The Morning Star of Glens Falls reported on March 7, 1887. “Having been brought in almost daily contact with members of the J.S. White drum corps since the organization of that body, and being a close observer and an apt scholar, the little fellow has become quite prolific as a drummer, beating various times and tunes with a precision and accuracy that would be credible to one of more advanced years.”

Following are more music history anecdotes and trivia collected from historic newspapers in the Glens Falls region.

· On Oct. 28, 1946, The Post-Star reported that Scottish soprano and USO show actress Ann Moray was to perform that evening at the opening dinner of the local Community Chest campaign at The Queensbury Hotel.

“Miss Moray … has been continually on the go since her arrival in this country in the fall of 1941,” The Post-Star reported. “Before coming here, Miss Moray studied with the famous Viennese teacher of bel canto, Frau Professor Rita Kury. In 1938, with the advent of Hitler in the Austrian capital, Miss Moray proceeded to finish her studies in Rome with Conte Calletti, and in Paris, where she perfected her French with Madame Melba’s old coach, Monsieur Gabriel Lapierre.”

· On Feb. 14, 1890, The Granville Sentinel reported that Frank Morey, junior partner in the firm Piercy & Company of Troy, donated “a beautiful new Fischer piano” for the Sunday School room at Sandy Hill Baptist Church.

· On Nov. 11, 1922, The Post-Star reported that Ralph M. Reynolds, who lived in Glens Falls as a teenager, purchased the Brunswick Music Shop at 20 Ridge St. in Glens Falls.

For the previous two years Reynolds had been a member of the Meyerhoff Orchestra of Schenectady.

· On July 13, 1918, The Lake George Mirror reported that Percy Dunn Aldrich had set up a summer music colony for the season at the Phoenix Hotel in Hague.

“Singing is the favorite pastime at the Phoenix, and choice music can be heard at all times of the day.”

· On Nov. 14, 1922, The Post-Star reported: “The Boy Scout band wants two trombone players right away. There are two instruments which may be obtained at a small cost and there is room in the band for both. … Lessons will be given free to the boys who take advantage of this opportunity.”

Click here to read the most recent previous Glens Falls music history post.

Freelance history writer and documentary film producer from Ticonderoga, NY