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LilyPondLane (#47023500)
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Messages left for LilyPondLane (71)[Leave Message]
Robert Schmitt
RE: Warren L. Brotherhood
Hello, I've been busy doing research, and found the answer regarding the Hambitzer Music House in Milwaukee. It turns out that Charles Hambitzer's father owned the store, and it was still in business in 1922.

I did a Google search for "Hambitzer Milwaukee", and the first listing is a Library of Congress document, in PDF format, titled "Charles Hambitzer Music Transcripts". On Page 3 is the following paragraph under "Biographical Note":

"Charles Hambitzer (1878 or 1881-1918) was born in Beloit, Wisconsin, to a musical family. His great-grandfather was a violinist at the Russian court and his father owned a music store in Milwaukee. After studying with Julius Albert Jahn and Hugo Kaun, Hambitzer played in the orchestra of the Arthur Friend Stock Company, and taught piano, violin, and cello at the Wisconsin Conservatory. In 1908, he moved to New York City, where he joined Joseph Knechtís orchestra at the Waldorf-Astoria, frequently appearing as a piano soloist. At the same time, he opened a music studio on the Upper West Side, and among his many pupils was the fourteen-year-old George Gershwin, who began his studies with Hambitzer in 1912. In 1914, Hambitzerís wife died of tuberculosis, and in 1918 he succumbed to the same disease, exacerbated by an emotional breakdown. It has been widely suggested that his death caused the young Gershwin to abandon his own budding career as a concert pianist."

In the September 9, 1922 issue of The Music Trades, there is an article on Page 35 titled "Merchandise Chat". It states in one sentence:

"Leading sales at the Hambitzer Music House, Milwaukee, are saxophones and ukuleles."

Here's the link:

This is important information for my family records as well. Both your Uncle Warren and my Great Aunty Anna almost certainly purchased their librettos for "Yokohama Maid" at Hambitzer Music House, your Uncle Warren the libretto for "The Mikado", and the same for my Grandfather's classical piano sheet music. The other music stores at the time, based on what I've seen, sold piano rolls or sheet music to popular songs of the time.

In addition, I found the 1921 edition of Polk's Wisconsin State Gazetteer and Business Directory. Here's the link:

If you scroll up a few pages to Page 1818, under the heading of Music Teachers, the Milwaukee section lists Beecher C. Burton on Wisconsin Avenue, and on Page 2020, the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music, then located on the 3rd Floor of the Stephenson Building, which is still there. Here's a link to the building's information:

Page 1821 lists Charles J. Hambitzer on Milwaukee Street.
Added by Robert Schmitt on Apr 24, 2017 8:11 AM
Robert Schmitt
RE: Warren L. Brotherhood
Thank you for the information and link. I just found an article that reviews, in part, a revival production of "The Mikado" in Milwaukee that was staged in 1921, just a year before "Yokohama Maid". And one of stars was...Beecher Burton. It doesn't mention either one of our relatives, but I can guarantee the my family members were seated in the audience. Especially the way they loved that opera. Perhaps this was the production your Uncle Warren performed in. The article is at the top center of the page.
Added by Robert Schmitt on Apr 22, 2017 2:43 PM
Robert Schmitt
RE: Warren L. Brotherhood
Hello, I am not sure of the exact date for either the Milwaukee Journal article or the two performances, but it was during the Summer of 1922. Here is the link to an article in the August 11, 1922 issue of The Music News, a prominent publication at the time in Chicago that covered opera and symphony in the Great Lakes region. It mentions my Great Aunt as a new talent in the Milwaukee opera scene after those performances.

So the production, which included your Uncle Warren, must have really been a huge success, and was clearly one of the major social events of 1922 to receive such extensive coverage in the media. No doubt that's why my Grandparents held on to that Milwaukee Journal article for the rest of their lives.

I also found the house address for the Schmitt family back then. It's on my Grandfather's birth certificate. They lived at 2214 West Vliet Street, just on the other side of what is now Tiefenthaler Park from your family's home. My Grandfather, Edward B. Schmitt, was born in the house on May 29, 1890. That's just 11 days after your Uncle Warren. It's quite likely, since they were the same age, that they attended the neighborhood school together, and played in the park.

I wanted to make a quick correction to an earlier message. The opera performance took place at 33rd and Lloyd Streets. It appears from looking at Google Maps that the church and adjoining parish hall are still there, but it's no longer St. Andrews. All the best to you.
Added by Robert Schmitt on Apr 22, 2017 1:11 PM
Robert Schmitt
RE: Warren Lawrence Brotherhood
I just uploaded the Milwaukee Journal article to your Uncle Warren's page.
Added by Robert Schmitt on Apr 22, 2017 6:23 AM
Robert Schmitt
RE: Warren Lawrence Brotherhood
Hello, and thanks for your timely reply. Yes, the Schmitt family your mom and Uncle Warren spoke of was ours. Historically, the parish my Great Grandparents & family belonged to in the early 1900s was St. Michael's Catholic Church, located on 24th Street between Cherry and Vliet. That's just a few blocks from 2818 West Vine! Some years later they moved to 2841 North Murray Avenue on the East Side.

My Great Aunty Anna sang in the professional-level choir at Gesu Church on the campus of Marquette University, and I'm wondering if your Uncle Warren might have played the organ there.

My grandfather, Edward B. Schmitt (Anna's older brother) played concert piano in those years, accompanying such people as violinist Fritz Kreisler and opera contralto Ernestine Schumann-Heink.

Their daughter, Mary Elizabeth "Betty" Schmitt (my Aunt), attended the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music. So as you can see, your ancestors and mine were linked by neighborhood as well as the performing arts.

I think that your Uncle Warren may have also been part of the group of community sponsors and benefactors that helped to found the Florentine Opera back in 1932-33. John-David Anello was the first conductor. There is a 1939 British film of "The Mikado" opera that my older Schmitt relatives just loved.

I remember as a youngster hearing all of these things talked about at family reunions, as well as summer concerts at the Emil Blatz Temple of Music in Washington Park that played to huge crowds and made the national news.

I spent some time yesterday and located the article I mentioned. I will get it uploaded.

Added by Robert Schmitt on Apr 22, 2017 6:09 AM
Robert Schmitt
Warren Lawrence Brotherhood
Hello, I just joined Find-A-Grave, and wanted to send you my first message. My Great Aunt, Anna M. Schmitt, was a good friend of Warren. I have a Milwaukee Journal article from 1922, announcing that they would be co-starring in the comic opera "Yokohama Maid", which was presented by the St. Andrews Parish Choral Dramatic Society, then located at 23rd and Lloyd Streets. The article featured both of their photos.
Added by Robert Schmitt on Apr 20, 2017 12:43 PM
Jennifer Madison
Eugene & Hazel Fraser
The other side of their marker has Marjorie (1913-2009) and Leroy (1900-1954) Strack. I have created memorials for them. If you know of any links, let me know.
Added by Jennifer Madison on Apr 19, 2017 8:53 PM
RE: May Brooks
It is truly my pleasure! Have a very Merry Christmas!
Added by kellybean on Dec 23, 2016 6:17 AM
Find A Grave
You are very welcome. They do not make actors like Robert Armstrong anymore. And he was outstanding in King Kong. A movie we watch each and ever Thanksgiving.
Added by Lynnette on Jun 16, 2016 12:15 PM
Photo requests for Garfield Township
Your relative doesn't appear on the partial index of Garfield. If you could contact the cemetery office and find out the location I would be glad to get your pic!!
Added by MaryK on Jun 12, 2016 7:19 AM
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