History is brought to life by the present day volunteer musicians who make up The 8th Regiment Band, Georgia Volunteer Infantry. 1st Lt. John Carruth, conductor of the Rome Symphony Orchestra, was instrumental in the formation of “The 8th” in 1986.
Allegedly, “The 8th” was the largest Georgia band and was the first to go to the Army of Northern Virginia. Historically “The 8th” served from the 1st Manassas in 1861 to Appomattox in 1865. The 8th Regiment, Georgia Volunteer Infantry was comprised of three companies from Rome (Floyd County), Georgia. The band’s first Chief Musician was G.G. Merck who volunteered at Rome. Their music scores are arranged from original period pieces and some of the volunteer members play authentic instruments from the Civil War period.
The modern “8th” (as they are frequently called) are regularly featured at a myriad of Civil War re-enactments including Gettysburg, Shiloh, Murfreesboro, Resaca. During the re-enactments the band may represent either the Confederacy or Union bands. In addition, they perform at other types of military re-enactments, balls, concerts, memorial services, etc. They have also produced several music CDs and have been featured in several movies and the multimedia show at Chickamauga Battlefield Park.
You may learn more about “the 8th” (including where to they will be appearing and how to purchase their products) by visiting their website at http://eighthregimentband.com/.
Photography courtesy of “The 8th.”
© Linda Woodward Geiger.