The Virginia Boys

The text of this public domain article is republished from the January 28, 1894 issue of the Atlanta Constitution. See this post about Harrison Randolph for more context.


The University of Virginia Glee Club to Visit Atlanta.


All about the Club and the Boys Who Formed It–Their Happy Songs Will Delight the Lovers of Song.

The University of Virginia Glee, Banjo and Mandolin Club will appear in Atlanta, at DeGive’s Grand opera house, on Monday, February 5th.

The tour will be as follows: First at Richmond, Va., January 31st; then Lexington, Ky., February 1st; Louisville, February 2d; Nashville, February 3d; Atlanta, February 5th, and Chattanooga, February 6th.

The northern clubs frequently take extended tours, Princeton going as far as San Francisco last year, but at no time has a southern club been bold enough to essay beyond a neighboring town or two.

At one time the northern colleges were far ahead of the southern in athletics, and often ridiculed our lack of brawn, but the day has changed and the southern colleges are fast becoming foemen worthy of their steel in almost any athletic contest.

Only last spring did the University of Virginia tie with Harvard in a beautiful 1 to 1 game of baseball, and win second place in the great intercollegiate baseball contest in Chicago last summer, defeating all of the northern teams, except Yale, and playing her a very close game.

The Virginia football team, besides winning the championship of the south, defeated many of the northern teams, and at the end of the glorious season was ranked as the next best after Princeton, Yale, Harvard and Pennsylvania.

The ability of the southern college men to cope with their northern rivals in the scholastic field has been demonstrated time and again in the army medical examinations, the fact being that the University of Virginia has furnished a large proportion of the surgeons in the army and navy.

Having proved her equality thus on so many occasions, the Virginia university decided to send out her musical club over an extended tour through the south, and the encouraging letters and notices they have received all along their trip indicate that the southern people are going to give them an even more enthusiastic reception, if it were possible, than they have given Yale, Princeton and Harvard on their numerous trips through the south.

The Glee, Banjo and Mandolin Club consists of thirty-five members, who are far from being as youthful and boyish as often college clubs are, their average age being between twenty-two and twenty-three years.

Nor are they picked from that idle, do-nothing class which infest every college, as a glance at the records of the men will show, for many of them are students of high attainments, for example:

B.W. Moore, the president of the club, is a bachelor of arts, and applying for a degree in medicine this year.

Harrison Randolph, director of the Glee Club, is a master of arts and instructor in mathematics.

Edward E. Mayberry, leader of the Glee Club, is a master of arts.

D. Lawrence Groner, manager, is a graduate of Washington and Lee university.

Hugh H. Young, assistant manager, is a master of arts and applicant for B.L. this year.

In the Glee Club, W.B. Eagles, first tenor, is a bachelor of arts, and H.C. Ford, first bass, is a bachelor of science and ex-commandant of the Virginia Military Institute.

In the banjo club, W.H. Saunders is a bachelor of arts, and E.L. Whittemore a bachelor of philosophy, while E.O. Lovett, the violinist, is assistant professor of astronomy.

Among the men most distinguished for their musical ability are Harrison Randolph, who is a perfect genius and a performer of wonderful ability on the pipe organ. To him has been allotted the awful task of directing the Glee Club; M.A. Burthe, one of the soloists of the club, has a baritone voice of great culture and sweetness, and is a man of much experience upon the amateur stage.

W.B. Eagles is the leading first tenor, and sings like the far-famed nightingale. He seems to have no trouble in reaching notes that the ordinary tenor would not touch with a ten-foot pole.

Among the bass voices, W.B. Moore, first bass, and H.C. Ford, second bass, have voices of great rotundity and volume, though several other basses, H. Old particularly, run a very close second. In fact, it is hard to differentiate against any of the Glee Club, while as to the mandolin and banjo clubs, they play “like one man,” and are simply splendid,  so that it is impossible to draw distinctions.

C.H. Townsend, the leader of the Banjo Club, is a finished musician, playing on nearly every known instrument, including the Moorish potdrums at the fair, and can slide his fingers up and down the frets in a most miraculous manner and flirt with the girls in the audience at the same time, and although E.F. Mayberry, leader of the mandolins, is too bashful to look at the girls, he devotes his attention with great advantage to his instrument.

The club has been practicing the past two months, and will put up a finished concert, whose programme will include many new classical pieces, a variety of comic selections and favorite college songs, tunes, etc.

Many of the old football songs which have been sung by excited spectators, while cheering on their Virginia giants in many glorious contests of brain and brawn, will be resung by the club.

This is the first southern club which has made an extended tour of the south, and as the other cities are making such active preparations for an enthusiastic reception, it behooves the people of Atlanta, at least to show their patriotism by attending the concert if possible. The personnel of the club is as follows:

B.W. Moore, president; D.L. Groner, manager; Hugh Young, assistant manager.

Glee Club–Harrison Randolph, director; first tenor, H.R. Elliott, Jr., W.B. Eagles, P.D. Cockrell, T.C. Firebaugh, W.H. Sneed; second tenor, L.M. Allen, W.L. Cooke, E.A. Craighill, Jr., F.M. Bullwinkle, T.H. Neel; first bass, M.A. Burthe, B.W. Moore, W.W. Glass, H.W. Greenough, J. Carroll Payne; second bass, H.C. Ford, H. Old, R.B. Taylor, W.M. Brownough.

Banjo Club–C.H. Townsend, leader; banjourines, C.H. Townsend, M.W. Pope, G.A. Schwab, J.M. Dill, McL. Tilton; banjos, F.W. Shine, E.L. Whittemore; guitars, A.L. Gray, T.H. Neel, H.W. Greenough, W.H. Saunders, E.F. Mayberry, J.H. Hume.

Mandolin Club–E.F.Mayberry, leader; first mandolins, E.F. Mayberry, W.H. Saunders, McL. Tilton, C.H. Townsend; second mandolins, W.N. Lippincott, A.C. Schrieber, J.W. Albright; guitars, A.L. Gray, T.H. Neel, H.W. Greenough, M.W. Pope, J.H. Hume; violin, W.N. Lippincott, E.O. Lovett.

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