St Michael's

Baltimore, MD United States
Founded: 1958

Inactive Junior
No information available
Position 200+ indicates Division II, Position 300+ indicates Division III, Position 400+ indicates Mini Corps.

CORPS Photos

The St. Michael‘s Chi-Angels, formed in 1958, was a junior marching and maneuvering corps based in Chicago, Illinois. They were sponsored by St. Michael Parish of Chicago,

In 1964 the Chi-Angels merged with the Morton Grove Cougars to form the Chicago Spartans.

[Encyclopedia of Drum and Bugle Corps, 1966]
Many years ago I joined a boy scout troop and slowly watched it fall apart for lack of interest until a counselor taught us a few drill steps and 4 notes on a "G" bugle. We marched our little hearts out and eventually the Rangers were born.
Our parents worked hard to build a treasury and as a parade corps we started to build our treasury to a point where we could take off the helmet liners, brass buckles and boots and put on the name and uniform of a "CHI-ANGEL."
We had some very good instructors, and our efforts were equally met by the efforts of our parent group to build a championship corps. Our hopes were high and our manager kept them there. He worked very hard to keep our spirits high and our corps together, for after members of our corps won individual trophies they came to the attention of leading corps in the state. Our corps was a tight-knit group and all agreed to beat- not to join leading corps. In all the time of our existence we only lost one member of our corps to another corps and one member we lost to god.
As the years passed our corps built in members for our manager never drew the line on a boys past behavior. Many of our members of the corps had not been little angels before joining but through the hard work of our manager, the parents group, and St. Michaels they received new goals in life. We were a hard corps and our main objective in life was to hang the National Flag in our Trophy room. We knew we had to crawl before we could walk and walk before we could march in First place. The corps we had to beat in order to walk was the Cougars. This became an obsession with us, "Beat The Cougars" was our cry and our first aim. Our management and parents group did all the things they possibly could to supply us with the necessary uniforms, horns, drums, and instruction to go to the top and slowly we progressed. Our progression was matched by other corps and the scores didn't seem to close as we thought they should for we knew we had improved.
One day a murmur softly passed through our meeting hall and evolved to a shout heard all over the United States. The word was merger. At this time we placed all the facts on the meeting table. What was our first aim. "To be National Champs". Who should we merge with was the question.
The answer was inevitable. A corps that was striving like us to be National Champs. The conclusion, "The Cougars". Was this possible?,merge with a corps that we have fought on the field for so many years? There were so many differences between us and among these...Spirit...Finances...and Environment. Could we adjust to their way of life and them to ours??? We members agreed that before such a step was taken we should find out if we could get along with this element. We invaded Morton Grove by all possible means, Cars, Busses, and even hitch-hiking. We met our former foes and found them to possess the same outlooks and aims in Drum Corps as us. Before the final papers were signed we members were as one. Together we had the skill, finances and spirit to win the Nationals and felt that Cleveland would be our time to march.
Now things began to happen. Perhaps if the adults, and I use the term lightly, would have merged only half as well as us, we would have met our goal but each element trying to gain control of the Board of Directors brought a demoralizing effect on the corps. There was a constant fight going on in the directors circle, so it seemed to us, until one by one, men who had done so much to build the Chi-Angels began to leave disgusted and down-hearted.
Hard working men, who looked upon a corps as dedicated young men and women striving with all their hearts to become National Champs, not as a hobby to pacify their own ego or self involvement in a community function. We felt at this time that if we stuck together closer perhaps the adults would learn from our example and perhaps realize that we were serious about being Champs, but after the disappearance of some of the Gladiators who fought for our cause the walls began to tremble. Some young men quit because of personal and family problems, but now management didn't go after these men as before and help them work out their problems. Other men quit because of constant harassment inflicted because they had the guts to point out to the directors that their attitude was wrong. Still others were thrown out because they were not mighty males, regardless of the fact that they had spent many long years giving the corps their sweat and blood.
The final slap in the face came on Banquet Night when the Booster Club gave a gift of appreciation to the Manager of the Morton Grove side and nothing was allotted to the Manager of the Chi-Angels side. Immediately a hat was passed among the Spartan members and practically every boy threw in their menial allowance and drafted an adult to run to the nearest open store to purchase a gift of appreciation for the other half of management for he truly deserved much more than equal honors.
A week or so passed and we learned that the man we have looked up to all these years, and who had done so much for us, would no longer be our manager. The last Gladiator was gone. We knew what to expect from what was left to run the corps for we had had experienced many of his policies. We were all for throwing in the towel when a new force arose. Our Bugle and Drill Instructors told us that on Dec 21, we were to have a meeting of the corps and perhaps we could pick up the pieces and strive to put the corps back together. With a little cooperation and sincere hard work the Spartans still had a chance. We anticipated this night very much and spent weeks getting together an outline of ideas that would help us to reach our aim. When the big night arrived we were all standing in the hall of the Legion Post, when the door to the meeting was closed in our face. We told the manager we had been invited to this meeting by his own proclamation and by our instructor. It seemed before the meeting had started, it had ended and we were still out in the cold.
Since then we have divided into the four top four corps and only a remnance remains as Morton Groves hobby but I still wonder what heights could have been reached if the adults would have put the corps before their own personal feelings.
A Chi-Angel, Who isn't shy."

[Story from the Feb 1965 issue of DCW]

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CORPS 3 items

St Michael's

St Michaels from the Bill Ives Collection Contributed by George Biggs
St Michael's

St Michaels from the Bill Ives Collection Contributed by George Biggs
St Michael's

Chi-Angels,Chicago,IL,Pin1-St.Michael(RE-3.0)J_U_S from the Richard Elmquist Collection


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