Monday, December 29, 2008

100 Year Old Playing Even Older Drum reports:

PLYMOUTH - Harold Boyer celebrates a century

Nearly a century of percussion has taken its toll on Harold Boyer’s eardrums. But the heart and soul of the little drummer boy who led the first Pilgrim Progress haven’t missed a beat.

Boyer celebrated his 100th birthday the way he has celebrated many grand occasions since arriving in Plymouth for the town’s tercentennial, tapping out a beat on the old rope drum that accompanied him through most of the last century.

Boyer led the parade again last weekend, marching with his trusty drum at the head of the annual procession opening Plimoth Plantation. Boyer and his drum are fixtures of the Plantation. They welcomed the English crew that brought Mayflower II to Plymouth Harbor in 1957. They were there again last summer when survivors of the original crew celebrated the 50th anniversary of their historic journey.

The drum is described as 112 years old.

Looks Like a Thompson & O'Dell:

Mr. Boyer's drum looks a lot like this Thompson & O'Dell drum now in the National Music Museum.

See "Portrait view of snare drum by J. B. Treat, Boston, 1905" The museum's website describes the drum:

"NMM 10045. Snare drum by J. B. Treat for Thompson and Odell, Boston, 1905. Paper label affixed inside shell, visible through vent hole: THE CELEBRATED / "ARTIST DRUM." / MADE BY / J.B. TREAT., followed by a long advertisement by Thompson and Odell, dated November 1905. Wood shell with natural finish, 225mm (8-7/8") x 421mm (16-9/16"). Twelve leather tugs. Wood rims with the outside edge painted black, with twelve metal hooks through which the rope passes. Brass snare adjuster. Ex coll.: Armand Zildjian. William F. Ludwig II Collection, 2001."

"Lit.: Jayson Dobney, Innovations in American Snare Drums 1850-1920, M.M. Thesis (Vermillion: University of South Dakota, 2003), pp. 140-141."

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