The Wilson High School Athletic Association in Florence, S.C., recognized the importance of music as a support mechanism for the school’s athletic achievements and presented its first Special Achievement Award to trustee emeritus Hamilton E. Flowers, a member of Zion Baptist Church in Northwest Washington. Flowers was inducted into the association’s hall of fame.
The recognition highlights Flowers’ leadership and accomplishments as the “Pioneer Bandmaster” who established the big band movement during his tenure from 1945 – 1950, setting standards that ushered in the modern music era. Flowers was a science teacher at the school during that time.
The ceremony was held recently at the Southeastern Institute of Manufacturing and Technology in Florence. Flowers’ wife, Barbara, and their daughter Tracye accepted the award for him and spoke on his behalf.
Previous band directors honored at the program include Sydney B. Young (1950–1960) and Leon Harvey (1960–2004), who was a graduate of Virginia State College like Flowers. The three directors were applauded for contributing a combined total of 59 years of musical excellence.