The Nodaway County Historical Society celebrated a special centennial on Sunday — the participation by a group of local musicians in a historic women's suffrage march through the streets of Washington, D.C.
Young women from the Maryville High School Marching Band gathered at the society's museum to re-create a portion of the Missouri Ladies Military Band's performance during a large rally in the nation's capital on March 3, 1913. The event made headlines nationwide.
"I was really glad we were able to do it on that day," Historical Society Board Member Melissa Middleswart said. "We really appreciate the teachers and students that put in so much effort for the event."
MHS history teacher Catrina Pelton and band director Burke Shouse helped organize the student ensemble, which played a rendition of a song that the original band performed during the parade. Students also spoke lines composed about the event.
Shouse arranged a special version of "The Battle Hymn of the Republic," and Pelton wrote the dialogue and acted as narrator.
The event also included the dedication of a new museum display dedicated to the Ladies Military Band and the suffrage movement, which led to women being granted the right to vote with the ratification of the 19th Amendment in 1920.
Artifacts in the exhibit include a uniform and the drum used by Esther Eversole during the march.
Middleswart said that the society is still looking for information and artifacts pertaining to the march and the band's members.
"We'd like to know more," Middleswart said. "Any information would be very helpful. Any stories about a family member's reaction to voting for the first time, any pictures or relics would be appreciated."
The Missouri Ladies Military Band was second in line in the parade, which became violent after thugs allegedly hired by anti-suffragists attacked the marchers. About 200 people were hospitalized.
"We are so excited to be a part of something that was so significant in women's history, our country's history," Middleswart said. "That is why we are really hoping that more people will come forward with stories about the (suffrage) movement."
MHS students participating in the event included: Madison Atwell, alto saxophone; Keira Dougan, cornet; Riley Elliott, clarinet; Tricia Euler, cornet; Sara Knowles, snare drum; Adan Miles, cornet; Ashton Reuter, trombone; and Jaque Runyon, band leader. Additional musicians included Mariah Patterson, Anna Bagoly and Jessica Knowles.
The museum is now open to the public following its annual winter hiatus. Hours are 1-4 p.m. Tuesday through Friday. Tours are also available by appointment by calling (660) 582-8176.