John Philip Sousa's Baton

America's "March King," John Philip Sousa, used this silver-tipped baton to conduct his world-famous band. A masterful composer of music to get people moving, Sousa also popularized classical music, first as leader of the U.S. Marine Band and then touring with his own Sousa Band. His stirring military marches, including "The Stars and Stripes Forever," expressed the nationalistic spirit of their times, but they have also gained an enduring appeal as part of the country's patriotic repertoire.
Currently not on view
Object Name
Sousa, John Philip
Physical Description
silver (overall material)
wood (overall material)
overall: 15 in x 1/2 in; 38.1 cm x 1.27 cm
overall: 15 3/16 in; 38.57625 cm
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
See more items in
Culture and the Arts: Musical Instruments
National Treasures exhibit
Music & Musical Instruments
Popular Entertainment
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Related Publication
Kendrick, Kathleen M. and Peter C. Liebhold. Smithsonian Treasures of American History
Treasures of American History online exhibition
Publication author
National Museum of American History
Publication URL

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