Bass drum heads are a free canvas for advertising your corps and their accomplishments.  Some corps took advantage of this, some did not.  Depending on the placement of the wording / graphics, it would seem to be a rather high maintenance area.  

Generally speaking, the drum heads used prior to the early-1960s were made from animal skins and temperature / humidity affected their tuning.  From the early 60s-on, synthetic (polymer) drum heads have been used.


Do you have a drum head photo to share??  Send us a jpg and we’ll add it to the site.


Click on photos to enlarge





ca1900 Grand Army of the Republic (G.A.R.) Drum Corps, Oregon

The GAR was a fraternal organization of Union Civil War Veterans,

precursor of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) and the American Legion.




1928 Tacoma Elks D&BC

Tacoma, Washington




Bremerton has been a naval shipyard since 1891



1931 Moose Drum & Bugle Corps

Tacoma, Washington










1936 Spokane American Legion Auxiliary (women’s) D&BC

[Check out the bugles guys!!]



1939 Pasco Jr Legion D&BC

Pasco, Washington

[Dr. Glen’s Corps]



1939 VFW Post #3053 Jr. D&BC

Steilacoom, Washington




1939 VFW Post #2995 Jr. D&BC

Bellevue, Washington



By 1948 this all-girl corps switched sponsors from Pepsi-Cola to the Knights of Pythias. 

They would remain with the Knights until they disbanded ca 1968.

Knights of Pythias bass drum is below.





Walla Walla, Washington







1950 Nile Sr. D&BC

Seattle, Washington



1950 Eagles Sr. D&BC, Aerie #26

Walla Walla, Washington




Golden Skyliners Jr D&BC [AL Post #3]

Great Falls, Montana





1954 Longview-Kelso Scouts Jr. D&BC

Longview-Kelso, Washington




 1955 Baker Scouts Jr. D&BC [Troop 133]

Baker, Oregon



Pasco, Washington

[Later known as The Columbians]




1956 Wenatchee American Legion Post #10 Sr. D&BC

Wenatchee, Washington



ca 1959 Hawks Jr. D&BC

Portland, Oregon



1959 CYO Squires (Shamrocks) Jr. D&BC

Seattle, Washington



ca 1960 Pendleton Sr. D&BC

Pendleton, Oregon




1961 CYO Shamrocks Jr. D&BC

Seattle, Washington



1961 Everett Blue Knights Sr. D&BC [AL Post #6]

Everett, Washington




1961 Pasco Columbians Jr. D&BC [AL Post #34]

Pasco, Washington



1961 Portland Hawks




1962 Great Falls Scouts – Explorer Post 21, Jr. D&BC

Great Falls, Montana



1962 Blue Angels Jr. D&BC [VFW Post #1263]

Renton, Washington



1962 Vernon Girls Jr. D&BC

Vernon British Columbia, Canada



1962-63 LK Corps Jr. D&BC

Longview-Kelso, Washington








1963 Mariners Jr. D&BC

Astoria, Oregon





1964 Everett Blue Knights Sr. D&BC [AL Post #6]

Everett, Washington




1965 West Seattle Amigos

[VFW Post #2713]



1965 Bell-Airs

Seattle, Washington



1965 West Seattle El Toreadors


[AL Post #160]



1966 Royal Lancers [AL Post #1]

Portland, Oregon 




1966 Falcons Jr. D&BC

Athena-Helix-Weston, Oregon




1967 Rangers Jr. D&BC

Pendleton, Oregon



1967 Percussion-Nauts Jr. D&BC

Spokane, Washington




1966 – 1968 Imperial Cadets Jr. D&BC

Portland, Oregon




1960 – 1967 Seattle Thunderbirds Jr. D&BC





ca 1948 – 1968 Knights of Pythias, All-Girl Jr. D&BC

Roseburg, Oregon

[Formerly the Pepsi-Cola Girls]




1969 Royal Lancers Jr. D&BC

Portland, Oregon




Golden Skyliners Jr. D&BC [AL Post #3]

Great Falls, Montana



ca1972 Alberta Girls

Alberta, BC Canada



1970s Black Watch Jr. D&BC

Auburn, Washington




1970s Edmonton Strutters

Edmonton Alberta, Canada



ca 1973 Bellevue Sentinels




1975 Seattle Cascades




A Story from a Member:

“[In the mid-60s] One of the Hawks’ bass drummers got a little creative with his bass drum.  I was at a parade staging area with the Hawks close by and noticed a small line of people taking turns looking inside his bass drum via the small air hole (don’t have the exact term for it).  Asked one of the guys what they were looking at, and he said the bass drummer attached a Playboy centerfold inside his drum.”

Long Live The Hawks!