A Band of Bands

High school bands at Houck Stadium c 1964Somebody will have to tell me what brought all these bands together. I saw high school logos from Cape Central, Jackson, Advance, Valle, Kelly, Sikeston, “D” and one uniform sporting “Official All American Lover.” I’m not even sure where the photos were taken. I thought it was Houck Stadium, but it might have been at Jackson High School.

This was one of my rolls of coffee can film and it was in really bad shape. I think it might have been processed in the darkroom at The Jackson Pioneer, one of the most primitive facilities I ever had the displeasure of working in, and that includes darkrooms I set up in motel rooms while covering hurricanes.

A lot of the frames weren’t fixed nor washed properly, so they have amoeba-like shapes on them that were too big to even think about spotting out. So, look around the dust spots, scratches and amoebas, please.

Bands from all over

High school bands at Houck Stadium c 1964This shot has “D” girls in the foreground, but Central High School majorette Della Heise is behind them.


Thanks to Lois Seabaugh, Terry Hopkins, Linda Suedekum, Phil Lewis and others who were more awake in the 1960s than your photographer, the event has been identified as the annual Jackson Band Festival.

Band photo gallery

You are welcome to try to put names and schools to faces. Click on any photo to maker it larger, then use your arrow keys to move through the gallery. Again, please overlook the flaws.

10 Replies to “A Band of Bands”

  1. I don’t remember if they had marching band contests back then but my to girls were in them in the 90s when they were in high school. Or maybe they were all getting ready to fo a SEMO homecoming parade or halftime.

  2. This was probably the Jackson Band Festival. It is still held every year where area bands have a parade and then a big mass formation on the football field.
    It used to be an all day event. When I was in HS we went to do a parade and then practice a mass formation and then parents and public came at night to see the program.
    When I taught in Jackson, we used to take our classes uptown, sit in someone’s yard or on the curb to watch the parade. It was around 2 PM. But now the parade is after school. The Superintendent and others decided it wasn’t educational to take time out from school. Ugh!
    I am glad I taught when the kids could have fun learning!

  3. More than likely I’m in the big mass formation photograph. I attended the Jackson Band Festival all 4 years of high school. It was a great time and enabled a guy to check out girls from other schools 🙂

  4. And behind Della “tipping” his hat and play tuba would be Phil Jackson(I think that’s the right last name – sorry Phil, a senior moment there) who went on to be in the Air Force band and then I believe taught music for several years. Don Sander, with cornet, a few rows back too.
    Does this qualify me as a band geek? If so please send me a sticker.
    Annual punch line from Jackson band director – “It’s a beautiful day in Jackson today.”

  5. I remember well the Jackson Band Festival every year.
    I believe it was held in the fall of the year with the concert band festival held in the spring at Houck Field House. It was always a fun time for all of us. I was blessed to have been in both the marching band and the concert band. We always had the cotton parade in Sikeston, Mo in the fall of the year I believe right after we returned back to school from the summer (whenever it was cotton picking time and the crops came in.) I enjoy your pictures; they bring back pleasant memories. Judi

  6. When my brother and I were in Franklin School; I believe we had the volunteer mothers that were the crossing guards. I really enjoyed your pictures, the old cars, the girls crossing. Some more pleasant memories.


  7. Central marched in Jackson for years my memory was when under Tony Carosello we performed against our nemesis Leroy Masons Jackson HS Band.. The next spring in ’59 Tony recommended me for a scholarship to march at SEMO by then under the former Jackson leader Leroy Mason who we thought was a tyrannical screamer however after a summer at Navy OCS, I realized that he was really a pussycat.

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