"The first sousaphone was built by James Welsh Pepper in 1893 at the request of John Philip Sousa who was dissatisfied with the hélicons in use by the United States Marine Band. Some sources credit C.G. Conn with its construction, because of the first sousaphone he built later in 1898. Sousa wanted a tuba-like instrument that would send sound upward and over the band, much like a concert (upright) tuba. The new instrument had an oversized bell pointing straight up, rather than the directional bell of a normal hélicon. . . .Warren G. Harding, the 29th President of the United States, was a sousaphone player (Wikipedia)."