The town of Bancroft is pleasantly situated in the northwest corner of the township, and is located in townships sixty-one and sixty-two, being on the township line dividing them, and about one mile from the Sullivan county line and the same distance from the west line of the township. Is is principally built upon sections five and thirty-two. It was laid out in the year 1857, by John Oram and Thomas Mikels, each giving five acres of land for the site of the town. The first merchant being Washington Nichols and the first blacksmith shop was that of Lon. Chaplin, whose sturdy blows upon the anvil made music for the villagers, and at the same time told of energetic and honest work.
Bancroft has not grown rapidly nor has it caused any rivalry. It is the only village in the township, and is a busy, lively little place of some 150 inhabitants, and commands a good trade, being surrounded by a splendid agricultural country and well-to-do farmers.
One of the institutions of the village is the brass band, which was organized early in the decade between 1870 and 1880. This band attended the Gentry County Fair in September of 1873, a premium of $100 having been offered for the best musical performance at the fair. To the credit of the Bancroft brass band let it be said they took in that $100. The first leader was William E. Peery. The band is now made up as follows, and still holds its well-earned reputation: E. S. Johnson, leader, E-flat cornet; W. J. Weldon, B-flat cornet; Charles A. Chaplin, first alto; James Endicott, second alto; W. E. Peery, B-flat tenor; William Oram, barytone; H. P. Gibson, tuba; John B. Markey, bass drum.
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