Square Dance History Project
The rich story of North American square dance finally has a home in the digital age.

Browse Items (1753 total)

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Sashay newsletter, Vermont, 1953

Sashay was a country dance bulletin published by musician Emerson Lang, of Danville, Vermont. It's clear from the contents that Lang's readers were open to many styles-- mention is made of squares,… View item
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Schottische

In modern square dance programs, squares are often intermingled with round dances. Similarly, traditional dance programs often involve a variety of dances other than squares—waltz, polka,… View item
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Foxtrot

The Old Grey Goose provided the music and Doug Protsik gave a brief introduction as dancers enjoyed a little foxtrot among other country dances. This was part of the Retrospective session led by… View item
Website

The Life and Times of Joe Thompson

This 27 minute documentary about North Carolina fiddler Joe Thompson is a look at music and dance in African-American communities, not just in the 20th century but reaching back in time. Thompson and… View item
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Beatnik square dance

All forms of social dance reflect changes in the broader society in which they take place. This call, found in an unidentified caller's notebook, dates from the 1950s and shows a common set of… View item
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Square Dance source list

Bill Martin was an active promoter of square dancing, inspiring musicians and callers to revive older squares and to establish new series. His Bubba Guitar website was a hub of terrific resources,… View item
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New England Contras from a Western Caller's Point of View

This is the third in a series by Jack McKay, California square dance caller. Written in 1952, it's an attempt to look at the challenges of calling New England contras compared to Western squares,… View item
Website

Let's Dance archives

Let's Dance is the monthly publication of the Folk Dance Federation of California, beginning in 1944. More than 750 issues have been digitized and are available at this site, along with a listing of… View item
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Cowpuncher's Square Dance Call - response

Folklorist Sam Hinton has some fun with the poem. If it is to be taken literally as an example of a dance call, Hinton calculates that the cowboys are dancing at a speed greater than 20 miles per… View item
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Cowpuncher's Square Dance Call

Poem that appears to be square dance patter from traditional western square dancing View item
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The Old Folks Danced the Do-Si-Do

This is a detailed look at one iconic figure from American square dance, but as the author points out, the phrase can mean different things at different times and in different parts of the US. Jamison… View item
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Round Dance

Round dancing, or couple dancing, is an established part of many communities where square dance flourishes. It's worth remembering that this sort of dancing was not always viewed favorably. In this… View item