In 1926, the North Bay Pipes and Drums was established by local merchant, N. J. (John) McCubbin. The small band included men of Scottish heritage and ex-service personnel who had received musical training with the military. Being the only local pipe and drum band, the group performed at numerous community events. Membership and activity waned during the course of the Second World War but Victory Day, and the return of freshly-trained musicians, revitalized the group.
In 1948, the North Bay Legion Branch 23 assumed full sponsorship of the band. In 1959, the band was renamed ‘Branch 23 Royal Canadian Legion Pipes and Drums’ reflecting the changed status of the Legion itself. During subsequent years, the band grew considerably. It was not unusual to have in excess of 25 members on parade. Sporting the Royal Stewart tartan, full dress, and feather bonnets, the band became one component of a Ceremonial Trio travelling out of town to Legion events and representing Branch 23 at most community gatherings.
Thanks to the hard work of the members, and sponsor support, the Pipes & Drums have been honoured to represent North Bay overseas in two Liberation Parades and at various other large gatherings at home here in Canada.
More recently, like the Legion, the band has downsized to a medium sized group. Happy to retain non-competition parade band status, members now place greater emphasis on training; enhancing musical skills and ensuring the future success of the band.
With full Legion sponsorship and added support from the North Bay Elks Club, Branch 23 Royal Canadian Legion Pipes & Drums continues to represent the citizens of North Bay and Branch 23 at parades and events throughout the District and Province.
Based on the level of dedication and commitment of existing members there is little doubt that the Pipes & Drums will continue to thrive and fulfill its “ambassador” status for many more years!