In 1874, the Troop celebrated its first centennial with a massive banquet.
Preparation for the event kicked off the prior year, when the unit commissioned Frank Furness, a Civil War veteran, Congressional Medal of Honor recipient, and Philadelphia darling architect, to expand the old armory building with a new addition.
The building's improvements included a fireproof safe, an elevator, a fire pump with a hose long enough to reach any part of the building, a large target for indoor pistol practice, an indoor rifle range, new furnishings, hunting trophies, and a Caldwell & Company chandelier designed to look like ancient armor.
Centennial festivities lasted three days, and reached a crescendo when seventy-seven Active Roll members sat down in full dress to consume the protein-heavy and fat laden delicacies listed on the menu above.
They ate this repast on china dining service specially commissioned and engraved for the event, drinking champagne imported from France and privately labeled Champagne FTPCC.
According to available sources, meals of this scope were quite common in the latter 19th century. The Troop hosted lavish social events with great regularity during the gilded age and the roaring twenties. The custom of serving champagne with the FTPCC label remained a Troop practice well into the 1960s.
If anyone knows further details about the Troop's 1874 Centennial banquet, or similar events, please share them here for future posting.