The Jenkins Orphanage Band

Jenkins Orphanage Band

The Jenkins Orphanage Band was an important institution in early 20th-century Charleston, South Carolina.

Founded in the 1890s by Rev. Daniel Jenkins, the orphanage’s vocational training included printing, bread making, shoe repairs, and music—bands, choirs, and singers.

Programs from 1914, the year that the boys’ brass band performed at the Anglo-American exhibition in London, indicate that the group worked long hours performing popular works by Irving Berlin and John Philip Sousa, as well as classical works by Verdi and Offenbach.

This according to “The Jenkins Orphanage Bands”, an unsigned article in Black Europe (Hambergen: Bear Family Productions, 2013). Above and below, the boys’ brass band in 1928.

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