William Henry Santelmann

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William Henry Santelmann
William Henry Santelmann circa 1920.png
Santelmann circa 1920
18th Director of the United States Marine Band
In office
1898 – May 1, 1927
Preceded by Francesco Fanciulli
Succeeded by Taylor Branson
Personal details
Born (1863-09-23)September 23, 1863
Offensen, Germany
Died December 17, 1932(1932-12-17) (aged 69)
Chevy Chase, Maryland, United States

William Henry Santelmann (September 23, 1863 – December 17, 1932) was director of the United States Marine Band.[1]


He was born on September 23, 1863 in Offensen, Germany. He studied violin and clarinet and at age 15, in 1878 composed his first music. He married Clara Becke (1861–1932) around 1889. One of his sons was William Frederick Santelmann (1902–1984) who would eventually be a director of the United States Marine Band.[1]

William was director of the United States Marine Band starting in 1892 when he replaced Francesco Fanciulli.[1]

He retired on May 1, 1927 and was replaced by Taylor Branson. He was then commissioned a captain in the United States Marine Corps.[1] He died on December 17, 1932 in Chevy Chase, Maryland.[2] He was buried in Arlington National Cemetery.


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