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E.K. Blessing:
Walter Piano:
United Musical Instruments:

Band Industry Capitol of the World

The manufacture of musical instruments in the Michiana area has been a major influence for nearly 125 years. From the Conn company, which was the first, to the twenty or so that remained to see the 1990's, these were the businesses that built the area's reputation of "the band instrument capitol of the world." Even the school music program had its roots in the marketing minds of Michiana. The roots run deep, and the connections remain strong to the heart of the community.

Oldtimers share a history of working at one of the plants, while most residents know someone who worked or is working in the industry. There are as many stories as there are people who lived them, but the formal recorded history is curiously lacking about the everyday people who made the industry so successful. For every page written about Colonel Conn or the other people at the top, dozens of workers toiled to make their dreams a reality.

That's why we'd like to hear from you and share your stories with other readers of this page. Let's write the history of all the forgotten ones: the people who made the industry what it is today and what it was yesterday.

From memories of what it was like working in the 30's, 40's, 50's and beyond, we'd like to hear about the hard times, the good times, and remember those who helped to build Michiana one day at a time.

Click on the "tell us" link on the home page to send us your stories, and check back to this site to look for what our readers share with us.

Help write History

On the left are a number of musical instrument company names. As we get the information, we plan to do a brief history of each company and add detail from our readers. Tell us what you know and remember about any particular company. And if we've forgotten to list one, tell us about it and we'll add it to the list.

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