1923 – On Our Way to 100 – 2023

Everyone who is anyone will be at our  90th Anniversary Celebration this Saturday, June 1, at the Community House in Birmingham. For those who cannot make it, we will be thinking of you!

Ninety Years…What an Accomplishment!  VP has undergone many changes during the past nine decades: changes to the building, changes to the mission and more.  Each year alone brings changes to the membership and leadership.

What were things like back in 1923?  What will they be like in 2023?  We know something about the past and we can take a guess or two at the future.

Looking Back – 1923

VP is Founded!

As best we know, local Birmingham resident Jack Giffel started the Village Players club with a group of local residents who want to “…generate interest in the theater.”  VP Historian Bill Haycook notes that the first meetings were held at the original Community House and the first production was “The Maker of Dreams.”

The World Outside VP in 1923:

January

  • The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics was established.
  • 1st Class Mail is .02 cents.
  • The last of the U.S. Troops leave Germany following WWI.

February

  • Noel Coward’s play, “Young Idea” premieres in London.
  •  British archaeologist finds the sarcophagus of King Tut.
  • Transcontinental air mail service.
  • First issue of Time Magazine is published.
  • St. Louis Cardinals introduce numbers on baseball jerseys.

March

  • “Sound-on-film” demonstrated in NYC.
  •  New Dance Marathon record of 27 hours is set.

April

  • Firestone introduces inflatable tires for cars.
  • Insulin becomes available to treat diabetes.
  • The 23rd Boston Marathon is won in 2:23:37.

May

  • First NYC to San Diego transcontinental passenger flight.
  • New York State revokes prohibition.
  • U.S. Attorney General declares it legal for women to wear trousers anywhere.

June

  •  Brinks debuts armored cars.
  •  First country music recording is made.

July

August

  • President Warren Harding dies in office, Vice President Calvin Coolidge is sworn in.
  • U.S. Steel Corporation introduces eight-hour work day.
  • New world record in the mile is set (4:10.4).
  • Huge earthquake (7.9) strikes Japan and  kills 142,000.

September

  • Sixteen-year-old from Ohio is crowned 2nd Miss America.
  • Lou Gehrig hits his first home run for the Yankees.

October

November

  • Schick patents first electric shaver.
  • The traffic light is patented

December

Looking Ahead – 2023

  • New world record for the mile 3:35.
  • Boston Marathon record 1:58:00.
  • Village Players Foundation Fund, established in 2013, reaches $1 million dollar mark.
  • Additions to Village Players facility provide rehearsal space, scene shop, meeting rooms, and parking!
  • Village Players pre-season ticket sales sell-out the entire season in advance!
  • A gala 100th Anniversary party is held at the theatre… Standing room only!

What do you predict for the year 2023? Write your predictions in the reply section of this blog.

 

–Gary Mach

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