But now came 1950, the start of a new decade, and with it new developments, because before we were just a parade corps. Now we would learn a drill and enter the big time-competition. (incidentally, the shows were 15 minutes long in those days and the tunes were comparatively short, so it took a lot of quickie numbers to fill up a drill. This made for some fun & games in all the parades because there were more tunes than the number of fingers on your average drum majors hands, and pretty soon we would run out of signals to relay to the horns in the last couple of ranks).
Let me digress a moment. Our name The Cavaliers. What's in a name? Well, for one thing, a good name (or lack thereof) can make or break the introduction of a new product in the marketplace. A good name, like a reputation, has prestige value worth it's weight in gold. And a good name still brings honor to, families and nations alike.
As I recall now, the adoption of our name seemed to be a naturally evolving event at the time. But there was no clear cut precedent to have an individual, characteristic name. Many corps, both in the Midwest & East were referred to by the geographical area that they came from, like Norwood Park, Logan Square, Aurora, Lincoln-Fullerton, and Canton (Ohio). Many others were known by the sponsorship of their Veterans Post, like Gladstone, George Bell, and Commonwealth Edison. In time, some of these corps adopted the individual names that we've come to know them by, such as Imperials, Vanguards, etc.
But what about us? What kind of a precedent were we going to be influenced by? Well, two things came together back in those days. There was this corps from across town called the Austin Grenadiers. Kind of a neat sounding name evoked a nice mental picture of military pomp mixed with a little dramatic flair. But it wasn't just their name that impressed us. Besides being good, they were flashy and sharp, and they had the ultimate G.E. in music selection for that era. You recognized every song they played and probably knew the words to at least half without having to be taught. Their music instantly made it's way into our songfest repertoire, and every vocal session included several renderings of Grenadier classics like "Embraceable You", "Wait Till The Sun Shines Nellie", "For It Was Mary", "Peg 0 My Heart", and the ever popular "Give My Regards To Broadway". In other words, to have a name kinda like the Grenadiers was not such a bad thing.
The other event that come together was the introduction of a new brand of cigarettes. That's what I said, cigarettes. Launched into the marketplace with much fanfare & hoopla, complete with a dramatic looking logo came Cavalier Cigarettes. Well, it didn't take long to recognize that this was a natural for us; (the fact that no other corps had that name didn't hurt us either). It had just the right sound and a swashbuckling image to go with it. And their logo became ours too. Standing erect but at a jaunty angle, complete with plumed hat, sword and cape, this logo has been our trademark on every-thing from bass drum heads to stationery. The Chicago Cavaliers were born. This was the name that stirred our spirits and provided the image that guided our choice of music, drill and uniform selection for many years. The cigarette company, as part of its promotional campaign, made available a costume jewelry pin of the logo. It helped cement the final link to our identity, as we all sent in orders for pins to wear on our hats. Today, we all know it from Cavalier Promotions as "Standing Man". Now, if you find someone with one of these pins on their corps apparel, better get out of the way of the wheelchair or crutches, 'cause you're looking at a real old-timer.