18-year-old Helena Muffly wrote exactly 100 years ago today:
Saturday, June 21, 1913: My music teacher came this morning, and I spent a long hour in taking my lesson.
Her middle-aged granddaughter’s comments 100 years later:
This is the second week since Grandma began taking piano lessons. Why did the hour seem long?
Was she learning “boring” but important basics like how to hold her hands and how to properly hit the keys?
I’m still looking for hundred-year-old music books for beginning piano students, but I did find a college-text on playing the piano:
The principal difficulty of piano playing we found to be the production of sufficient power, and the economical application of the power to all kinds of passages, with velocity and under delicate control. Tone quality may be harsh if the strings are unduly vibrated, or thin if the quantity of vibration be too small to excite all the overtones.
The Mechanics of Piano Technic by Ethelbert Warren Grabill (1909)