MUCHS Alma Mater history

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Mt. Upton Central High School Alma Mater

 
 
 
 
To date extensive research has been on going to attain data pertaining to our alma mater – our “Fairest Mt. Upton” – a tune etched in our minds from our very beginings at Mt. Upton.
In 2009, Bob and Charlotte Brooks Conant, and Mary Brooks Gilmore painstakingly and methodically devoted themselves to figuring out the music notes in rudimentary fashion for use at the GMU Alumni Banquet. Thanks to them and Mary Lou Hammond (GMU Correspondence Secretary) for including it in the Alumni program – each school was represented by an onstage singing of their alma mater. I heard MUCHS did a fantastic job!
Later on in 2009 and 2010, it was reported that the band sheet music was located while cleaning for GMU renovations. It is to be forwarded to us sometime in the future by the GMU music teachers. Missing on the music was the name of the composer.
It is a known fact, that in 1935, our Mt. Upton High School was built. It is assumed that in that time period – a school song was needed. This may have been when our “Fairest Mt. Upton” alma mater was introduced, using the melody of “Treueliebe” – an old German favorite, composed by Friedrick Silcher (Knecken) in 1827. Clinton Clark did not come to Mt. Upton to either ’49 or ’50, but during that time period he may have put the melody into a Band arrangement. However: we have no conclusive evidence to support this theory.
In 1909, Cadet Paul S Reinecke, West Point Class 0f 1911, adapted his words to the melody – which still stands today as the West Point alma mater.
At our 45th MUCHS Class of 1964 reunion (2009), both Clint and Marjorie Clark attended, as well as many classmates and friends. Mr. Clark enthusiastically led off an arousing rendition of our beloved school alma mater. His voice was clear and strong, never missing a note, a beat, or a word. Bless you Clinton A Clark – One of Mt. Upton’s finest!
Research on this topic is still on going. If you have any additions or corrections, please send us the info!
Contributing to this article:
Eileen Borst Gale – write up . Eugene Brooks, Bob and Charlotte Brooks Conant, Allen and Mary Brooks Gilmore, Jim (Homer) Brooks, Marjorie Clark, Mary Lou Hammond, 1942 Assembly Magazine, and the 1962 liner notes of the West Point Music Record Album.

Leeny

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11 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Steve White
    Feb 17, 2011 @ 10:40:15

    I remember hearing at one time that Edna Twitchell and Mrs. Brownell (Was her name Mary? I don’t recall, but she was married to Mert Brownell, the taxidermist in town) had a hand in writing the lyrics to our Alma Mater. Anyone have any other info. about this?

    The Mt. Upton Alma Mater is one of the most poetic and artful I have heard over the years. Most others are marching band or pep band-like in nature. I believe ours is a true tribute to our school/town.

    Reply

    • Leeny
      Feb 17, 2011 @ 16:00:18

      I had not heard about the Mary Brownell or Edna Twitchell theory. I will surely ask to see if anyone else remembers this! Thank you for your input! I meant to ask you….Are you related to Denny White?

      Reply

      • steve white
        Feb 18, 2011 @ 01:14:35

        No, but we graduated together in ’71. A fun guy to be around; always with the big smile.

      • barney j
        Feb 18, 2011 @ 19:07:44

        I distinctly rememeber Mr Clark telling our 5th grade music class that Mrs. Twitchell and Mrs. Brownell were the authors of our Alma Mater. I’m sure he told every class he taught the same.

  2. Leeny
    Feb 19, 2011 @ 10:50:15

    Barney…Thanks so much for the input on our alma mater. So glad to get any info we can to update our site! Sure do wish one of those ladies was still around for us to question. Anyways…Thanx a million!
    PS..You were such an obnoxious spoiled brat when we were younger! LOL LOL Leeny

    Reply

    • barney j
      Feb 19, 2011 @ 19:46:40

      When you played kick the can you invariably cheated! And now that you mention it, I am still obnoxious.

      Reply

      • Leeny
        Feb 20, 2011 @ 10:35:21

        I had to cheat to win! I learned that from an older brother! I was always the spaced-out wild-child!

  3. John T. "Jack" Jeffery
    Aug 11, 2012 @ 09:39:34

    Are there no recordings of Clint Clark led school choirs and/or bands singing or performing the Alma Mater? I know we are talking about the 8-track era and before, but…

    Reply

  4. John T. "Jack" Jeffery
    Aug 13, 2012 @ 12:51:37

    Although Freidrich Silcher is usually listed as the composer of this tune, there appears to be a degree of uncertainty concerning the accuracy of this. He may definitely have composed an arrangement of the tune which had originally been written by someone else. The names of Kuecken, and Georg Heinrich Lux have been mentioned in this regard. Sometimes the tune is simply referred to as it appears on the sheet music in the image above as a “Thuringer Volkslied”, i.e., a Thuringian folk song, Other sources credit the tune merely as an “Old German Folksong”, or a “German traditional song”.

    The following is from “The West Point Connection” regarding the history of this tune used in their “Alma Mater” as well as you indicate above:

    “From the April 1942 Assembly magazine:

    The Origin of Alma Mater

    From the 1947 Bugle Notes:
    “Alma Mater,” most beloved of all West Point songs, had its beginning in a very inauspicious manner. In the fall of 1908 Colonel, then Cadet, Reinecke was walking the area as a result of a bit of frivolity in Yearling Camp the preceding summer. Attempting to pass some time he tried to compose a furlough song. (It was the custom at that time for Yearlings to congregate at Battle Monument to “bay at the moon” and to sing furlough songs.) Finally he began to tramp to the tune of “Treueliebe,” an old favorite composed by Kuecken in 1827. Gradually he developed the words to what we know today as the “Alma Mater.” The song, however, died the death of all furlough songs and was not even sung at the graduation of Reinecke’s class in 1911. On June 9, 1912, one year after Reinecke’s graduation, “Alma Mater” was sung at the Baccalaureate Service and took its place as a musical expression of the feelings of every West Pointer toward his Alma Mater.

    From the liner notes of the West Point Music record album (courtesy Lew Higinbotham ’62):
    For a display of youthful ebullience that had no place in the ordered schedule of the USMA, Cadet Paul S. Reinecke, Class of 1911, was pensively walking the Area one day in the fall of 1909 when the idea for this song suddenly came to him. To the old German tune of “Treueliebe”, line by line and verse by verse the structure of “Alma Mater” was developed to the rhythm of his measured pacings. The words struck a responsive chord in the Corps and “Alma Mater” achieved instant popularity.

    From a Lieder web site (courtesy Wolf-Ekkehard Hindrichs USMA 2008):
    The melody may have been written by Georg Heinrich Lux or Friedrich Silcher, 1827″

    Source: “The West Point Connection” at http://www.west-point.org/greimanj/west_point/songs/almamater.htm [accessed 13 AUG 2012].

    Reply

  5. John T. Jeffery
    Aug 14, 2012 @ 22:38:44

    Although Freidrich Silcher is usually listed as the composer of this tune, there appears to be a degree of uncertainty concerning the accuracy of this. He may definitely have composed an arrangement of the tune which had originally been written by someone else. The names of Kuecken, and Georg Heinrich Lux have been mentioned in this regard. Sometimes the tune is simply referred to as it appears on the sheet music in the image above as a “Thuringer Volkslied”, i.e., a Thuringian folk song, Other sources refer to the source of the tune merely as “Old German Folksong”, or “German traditional song”.

    The following is from “The West Point Connection”:

    “From the April 1942 Assembly magazine:

    The Origin of Alma Mater

    From the 1947 Bugle Notes:
    “Alma Mater,” most beloved of all West Point songs, had its beginning in a very inauspicious manner. In the fall of 1908 Colonel, then Cadet, Reinecke was walking the area as a result of a bit of frivolity in Yearling Camp the preceding summer. Attempting to pass some time he tried to compose a furlough song. (It was the custom at that time for Yearlings to congregate at Battle Monument to “bay at the moon” and to sing furlough songs.) Finally he began to tramp to the tune of “Treueliebe,” an old favorite composed by Kuecken in 1827. Gradually he developed the words to what we know today as the “Alma Mater.” The song, however, died the death of all furlough songs and was not even sung at the graduation of Reinecke’s class in 1911. On June 9, 1912, one year after Reinecke’s graduation, “Alma Mater” was sung at the Baccalaureate Service and took its place as a musical expression of the feelings of every West Pointer toward his Alma Mater.

    From the liner notes of the West Point Music record album (courtesy Lew Higinbotham ’62):
    For a display of youthful ebullience that had no place in the ordered schedule of the USMA, Cadet Paul S. Reinecke, Class of 1911, was pensively walking the Area one day in the fall of 1909 when the idea for this song suddenly came to him. To the old German tune of “Treueliebe”, line by line and verse by verse the structure of “Alma Mater” was developed to the rhythm of his measured pacings. The words struck a responsive chord in the Corps and “Alma Mater” achieved instant popularity.

    From a Lieder web site (courtesy Wolf-Ekkehard Hindrichs USMA 2008):
    The melody may have been written by Georg Heinrich Lux or Friedrich Silcher, 1827″

    Source: “The West Point Connection” at http://www.west-point.org/greimanj/west_point/songs/almamater.htm [accessed 13 AUG 2012].

    Reply

  6. Anonymous
    Apr 16, 2013 @ 22:45:34

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    Reply

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