12th Cavalry Band, 1928
Fort Brown, Texas
An article from the Cass City, Michigan Chronicle newspaper dated Friday, August 31, 1928
Charles Kercher is in Fort Brown, Texas, where he is stationed as a member of the 12th Cavalry Band of which he became a member just recently. Under date of August 21, he wrote his parents, Mr. and Mrs. E. W. Kercher, at Cass City, as follows:
Arrived here yesterday at 11:00 a.m. We left Chicago Friday at 4:00 p.m. and certainly had a fine trip. Most of the cotton here is ready to pick and it surely is a beautiful sight.
The fort is located directly on the Rio Grande. The band hall is about two blocks from the International Bridge. Our town here of Brownsville is a short distance from the fort and about the size of Cass City. The fort is a beautiful sight in itself. The walks are all lined with large palms and orange trees.
Last night, I went across to Mexico (the town of Metamorous). From an agricultural standpoint, Mexico is fine. The cotton is nearly waist-high and all the crops are in abundance. But the towns all have narrow streets, all adobe thatched houses for the common people, and only the rich live in fine houses. The civil policeman of Mexico is practically powerless as the whole of this part of Mexico is under military rule and a troop is garrisoned in each town.
The band here is certainly a fine company numbering about thirty. All of course are mounted, being in reality a branch of the 12th Cavalry.
We have rehearsals every morning and two concerts a week (open air) and we also play for retreat each evening and for guard mount and special drills and parades.
The weather here is ideal as there is a steady gulf breeze blowing. We are twenty miles from the gulf. The horse corral here is a grand sight. Even the medical men have their horses. All of them are finely built and young as a horse for parade must be flawless because the musician must concentrate on his music and not stop to spur his horse on. If one horse lags or gains step the formation is spoiled. All of the band horses are cared for by the Headquarters Troop.
Will close as it is time for retreat.