Lethbridge Citizens Band Reborn

The Lethbridge Citizens Band  Courtesy the Galt Museum & Archives: P19760220030

The Lethbridge Citizens Band

Courtesy the Galt Museum & Archives: P19760220030

In the early 1900s, Lethbridge residents were grandly entertained by the Lethbridge Citizens Band. The band, shown here in front of their "clubhouse" (Galt Archives P19760220030), even won a prize at the Winnipeg Exposition in 1909. This May select members of the Lethbridge Community Band Society are going to honour this historic Lethbridge band.

Throughout the planning for The Greatest Years You Never Knew exhibit, we knew we wanted to do something on music -- what was popular between 1906 and 1913, what entertainment did Lethbridge people attend, etc. Going to the experts, we got in touch with the Lethbridge Community Band Society who did research into the era.

The band has chosen several songs from the time period and have added them to their repertoire. They will be playing the songs for the first time at the Historical Society of Alberta conference being held here in Lethbridge in May. For the performance the group is calling themselves the Lethbridge Citizens Band and the performers, drawn from both the Gold Band and the Silver Band, are hoping to come in costume as close to the original uniforms as possible.

The music chosen comes partly from research on what the original citizens' band played between 1906-1913 including such standards as God Save the King and the Maple Leaf Forever. Additionally, the group will play a special medley of songs from the original 1902 Broadway version of the Wizard of Oz.

The dress rehearsal and performance will also permit us to tape the band's performance and to incorporate their music into the exhibit. Visitors to the exhibit (from June to the run of the exhibit in September) will have the opportunity not only to hear the music of the time period but to hear it played by Lethbridge's own Community Band.