Thursday, March 24, 2011

Tarleton Thursdays: Did You Know?

The Little Symphony Orchestra
1936 Grassburr

Girl's Soon to Make Debut of Orchestra!
March 28, 1936 J-TAC

This is Women's History Month! Seventy five years ago some adventuresome female Tarleton students set out to change things up a bit! The March 28, 1936 J-TAC stated that some twelve Tarleton girls were going to create their own jazz orchestra! "It don't mean a thing if it ain't got that swing! "Hotcha" Miller and her Melodears are fixin' to swing out!" The girls claimed that their concoction of jazz would take even the King of Jazz off the top!

"Three gals who can make Benny Goodman cry for Mama toot a mean trio of clarinets." There was also a tenor sax, singing violins, a drummer, a trombone, and a bass horn. The orchestra had Nan Shelton, Dessa Lee Hair, and Minnie Lee Windell on the clarinet, Mary Elizabuth McAdams on the tenor sax, Jen S. Terhune on the trombone, Hazle Nutt, Margaret Hamilton, and Guinevere Whisenhunt on the violin, Marjorie Morris on the drums, and Clarice Andrews on the bass horn!

These girls set out to make Tarleton history with their all girl orchestra. Tarleton had girls in the Little Symphony Orchestra as shown in the photo above, including some of those girls who were in the new all girl orchestra. Tarleton also had an eight member all male orchestra and at one time an all girl band. The J-TAC article closed by saying "be sure to watch for the opening performance - they're the Best in the West!"

Unfortunately, the 1937 Grassburr showed only the coed Little Symphony Orchestra and the all male smaller orchestra.....guess the all girl jazz orchestra was short lived!

1 comment:

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