Army Letters From An Officer's Wife, 1871-1888, By Frances M.A. Roe

 -  But soon
there were other sounds and other thoughts. Above the noise of the car
I heard a brass band - Page 390
Army Letters From An Officer's Wife, 1871-1888, By Frances M.A. Roe - Page 390 of 410 - First - Home

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But Soon There Were Other Sounds And Other Thoughts.

Above the noise of the car I heard a brass band - and there could be no mistake - it was

Playing strong and full one of Sousa's marches, "The March Past of the Rifle Regiment" - a march that was written for Faye while he was adjutant of the regiment, and "Dedicated to the officers and enlisted men" of the regiment. For almost three years that one particular march had been the review march of the regiment - that is, it had been played always whenever the regiment had passed in review before the colonel, inspector general of the department, or any official of sufficient rank and authority to review the troops.

The car seemed to go miles before it came to a place where I could get off. Every second was most precious and I jumped down while it was still in motion, receiving a scathing rebuke from the conductor for doing so. I almost ran until I got to the walk nearest the band, where I tagged along with boys, both big and small. The march was played for some time, and no one could possibly imagine, how those familiar strains thrilled me. But there was an ever-increasing feeling of indignation that a tawdry coated circus band, sitting in a gilded wagon, should presume to play that march, which seemed to belong exclusively to the regiment, and to be associated only with scenes of ceremony and great dignity.

The circus men played the piece remarkably well, however, and when it was stopped I came back to the hotel to think matters over and have a heart-to-heart talk with myself.

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