1912 Glee Club (Corks and Curls)

The 1911-1912 season of the Virginia Glee Club was conducted by M.S. Remsburg. Officers included Arthur F. Triplett, president; W. E. Ewers, vice-president; Walter Gillespie Sprinkel, secretary; and Read Wilkins, treasurer; K. O. Payne was the accompanist.[1]

There were plans during this season for a trip to Randolph-Macon Woman's College and for a tour of the South, including stops in Greensboro, Charlotte, Atlanta, Macon, Montgomery, and Birmingham.[2]

The only concert for which documentary evidence has been found so far was a performance in Washington, DC, on April 26, 1912, at which the ongoing debate about the fate of Thomas Jefferson's home Monticello surfaced in public criticism of the home's private owner, Jefferson Levy:

The controversy over Monticello, the home of Thomas Jefferson, which Mrs. Martin W. Littleton of New York thinks should be turned over to the Nation by its owner, Representative Jefferson M. Levy of New York, unexpectedly found a place on the programme of the University of Virginia Glee Club to-night, with the result that Mr. Levy was forced to listen to rather pointed criticism of himself by Mrs. Littleton before a large audience in the Columbia Theatre. He heard her out, but when she concluded he left the building.Mrs. Littleton was one of the patronesses of the entertainment, and was on the programme to deliver a short lecture on "Historic Shrines." Mr. Levy went to the concert as the guest of a friend, and occupied a box. Mrs. Littleton was brought on the stage during the intermission, and glancing occasionally toward her adversary, she told the audience his ancestors had willed Monticello to the American people and how, in spite of that fact, Mr. Levy, simply because a court had found a way to break Commodore Levy's will, persisted in holding on to it.

"Uriah Levy," said she, "willed Monticello to the United States, but his heirs brought a lawsuit and the court decided that the Commodores wish and will should go for naught, and thus Monticello came into the possession of its present owners.

"Uriah P. Levy," accenting the Uriah so nobody could think she was referring to Jefferson Levy, "found that there were certain things he could do. He could serve his country on his ship: he could offer his sword to Lincoln; he could leave his fortune to his family, and he could crown his life of unselfishness and patriotism by leaving to the people of the United States things that they would regard as precious. Monticello, holding in its bosom this precious and consecrated thing"--she referred to the ashes of Jefferson--"should belong to all the people. And as we revere and respect Uriah Levy"--again accenting the Uriah--" for the gift he gave us, so we should respect and immortalize Jefferson Levy if he would make it possible for us to accept that gift."

Mrs. Littleton was asked to-night if she enjoyed the proceedings as much as the audience seemed to have done. She laughed merrily and said: "I was most happy that he was there, because I could not say to him in private conversation what I could say in public."[3]

After the season, Remsburg's conductorship ended and the group was temporarily disbanded in the fall of 1912.[4]

Roster[edit | edit source]

This roster is as listed in the 1912 Corks and Curls and may not include all members of the Glee Club from the 1911-1912 season.

First tenors: Vaughan Camp, J.B. Earnest Jr., E.W. Kearns, James Keith Lee, A.S. Ochs, Sam Saunders, Walter Gillespie Sprinkel

Second tenors: W.S. Bean, R.M. Bone, J.M. Howard Jr., A.I. Miller, C.E. Stump

First basses: K.T.W. Enger, Robert V. Funsten, Edgar J. Hecht, C.A. McKeand, Read Wilkins

Second basses: L.G. Burton, G.G. Cook, William E. Ewers, C.O. Hodges, W.P. Lecky, A.L. Stern, Arthur F. Triplett

References[edit | edit source]

External links[edit source]

This article has more context at Jarrett House North, the blog of the historian of the Virginia Glee Club Alumni and Friends Association.

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