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Ottumwa March

Worrell, B.O.

Ottumwa March
by: B.O. Worrell
Original Copyright: 1908
By: C.L. Barnhouse

BandMusic PDF Library

Cooley-Selland Collection
Music Preservation Team: Tom Pechnik, Senior Archivist; Mary Phillips; Wayne Dydo;
Bill Park, Director; Marcus Neiman, Program Notes
North Royalton, Ohio,_Iowa

Additional information on either the composer or composition would be welcomed. Please send
information to

Program note researched by Marcus L. Neiman

Medina, Ohio

Ottumwa (march) was published in 1908 by the C.L. Barnhouse Company. Ottumwa (pronounced
Uh-tuhm-wa) is a city in Wapello County, Iowa. The population was 24, 998 at the 2000 census. It
is the county seat of Wapello County and located in the southeastern part of Iowa. The city is split
into northern and southern halves by the Des Moines River.

After a long and fruitful music career, Worrell and his wife entered the Maywood (Illinois) Baptist
Home. Three months later, on December 29, 1949, he passed away. Burial was at the Maywood

Worrell resigned as bandmaster in 1914 but continued to play in the band's clarinet section until 1917.
Other music commitments were the reason for his resignation; he was president and director of the
Ottumwa (Iowa) Conservatory of Music and the organizer and conductor of the Ottumwa Symphony
Orchestra. Additionally, he taught organ, violin, and clarinet, and was the organist and choir director
of the Ottumwa Baptist Church. He also taught Sunday School and was an active Mason.

Because of the quality of the musicianship displayed in Denver, Worrell and his band were engaged
for a series of park concerts there. The band continued to win many honors, traveling widely, and it
was acclaimed as one of the best bands in the country.

He responded to an advertisement in a national music journal for a leader of the 54th Regiment Band
of the Iowa State Guard and was accepted. Under his leadership, the band came into prominence.
In 1908, the band won first place in the Iowa State Elks Band Contest. The following year, at the
Elks National Convention held in Los Angeles, the 54th Regiment Band competed against other Elks
bands from all over the country and won first prize. In 1913, the band was invited to play for the
Knights Templar Conclave in Denver, Colorado.

Benjamin O. Worrell was born in Clayton, Indiana, on February 6, 1871.

Although little is known of his music training, it is known that he excelled in
harmony, theory, and composition. He was married at about the age of 20.
A short time later, he became leader of Reed's Peerless Band of Sidney,
Ohio, and started composing marches.

DOB: February 6, 1871 (Clayton, Indiana)

DOD: December 29, 1949 (Maywood, Indiana)

Worrell, Benjamin O.