Where heavenly music and murmuring waters lull the weary to rest, Louisiana Purchase Exposition, St. Louis, Mo., U. S. A., 1904. Source: Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.
Morning concert, the village park [i.e. Congress Spring Park], Saratoga Springs, N.Y., c1900-1915. Source: Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.
|Fountain in Congress Park in Saratoga Springs, New York, United States, 2009. Source: Wikimedia Commons|
Situated between the USA and Canada, Belle Isle of Detroit, Michigan, is where we find a fascinating bandstand on a bridge over the Grand Canal. I located this bandstand via the Library of Congress (LOC) Prints and Photographs Division and thought it a lovely setting for a musical concert, especially if you were one of the ones floating in a boat.
Band concert on Grand Canal, Belle Isle Park, Detroit, Mich., between 1900 and 1906. Source: Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.
|Detroit. Belle Isle, Grand Canal, between 1898 and 1905. Source: Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.|
The Hampton Beach bandstand was built in 1900 as part of the boardwalk along the Atlantic shore. As a bonus to the tourist industry, daily concerts were held with the music carrying over a large distance due to the acoustic properties of the high ceiling. When not in use, people who didn't live with a view could watch the ocean activity from the shelter of the bandstand.
Bandstand, Hampton Beach, N.H, 1913. Source: Wikimedia Commons
Can you see the musicians? The Hampton Beach Bandstand entertained the public until 1963 when it was razed to make way for a bigger beach-side facility including an updated bandstand. If you're interested, find more historic info and fascinating images at the website, The Hampton Beach Bandstand.
Bandstand and Beach, Hampton Beach, N.H, circa between 1930 and 1945. Source: Wikimedia Commons
Also near the Atlantic Ocean sits the Bandstand on Lee's Promenade in Folkestone, England. Tended and painted over the years, it has a tremendous vantage point above the chalky cliffs of the English Channel. I hadn't realized that when I looked at this 1905 postcard which shows an image created between 1890 and 1900. Yet my research revealed zigzag walking paths leading down to the Folkestone Harbour. Now that's a bandstand with a view!
|Lee's Promenade and Bandstand, Folkestone, England, between ca 1890 and 1900. Source: Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.|
At Chippewa Park in Fort William's early days, before amalgamation with Port Arthur created the city of Thunder Bay, Ontario, the bandstand wasn't just on the Lake Superior shore, it was actually off the shore and on the water. Built in 1924, the wooden bandstand was connected to the shore via an elevated boardwalk.
Chippewa Park, between 1924 and 1954. Source: Thunder Bay Public Library
Although the bandstand was in regular use for Sunday afternoon concerts by the Fort William City Band in the early years, its location lent it to heavy weathering from summer storms and winter blizzards that slowly took its toll on the wooden structure. In 1954, the bandstand was bulldozed and has never been replaced.
Fort William City Band, undated. Source: Thunder Bay Public Library
I remember going to Chippewa Park as a child, but I don't remember the bandstand, possibly because my parents weren't beach-type people. Instead, we went on some of the amusement rides including the carousel, and walked through the zoo's live exhibits of small Northern Ontario animals. I camped at Chippewa Park a few years ago and the raised sidewalk pylons and base are all that's left of the bandstand, reminders of what was there with the possibility of something in the future. Meanwhile, the summer concerts continue on an outside stage attached to a nearby pavilion where people don't need to get sand in their shoes to enjoy the music.
Other posts in this historical bandstand series can be found:
- May 5, 2018 - Wooden Bandstands of By Gone Years
- Coming July 5, 2018 - Elaborate Bandstands for Special Events
Your turn... What's your favorite scenic or romantic bandstand setting, whether factual or fiction in any media?
Anita Mae Draper's historical romances are written under the western skies of the Saskatchewan prairie where her love of research and genealogy yield fascinating truths that layer her stories with rich historical details. Anita's short story, Here We Come A-Wassailing, was a finalist for the Word Guild's 2015 Word Awards. Her novellas are included in Austen in Austin Volume 1, The American Heiress Brides Collection, and The Secret Admirer Romance Collection. Readers can check out Anita's Pinterest boards for a visual idea of her stories to enrich their reading experience. Discover more at: