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Aqua Barn

Article describing Seattle's Aqua Barn, a floating dance hall. The hall was created by Jack Riley, who obituary can be found here.

Harold Luce biography

This short biography profiles Harold Luce (1918-2014), a well-known Yankee fiddler and dance caller closely associated with the Ed Larkin Dancers of north central Vermont. Luce started playing with the group in the 1930s and continued for eight decades, as well as calling and fiddling at his own square dances.He accompanied the dancers and called…

Fenton "Jonesy" Jones - Sets in Order, February 1961

Cover drawing and appreciation of the caller

Dick Leger - Rhode Island Music Hall of Fame Historical Archive

Website devoted to caller Dick Leger; the author also references the extensive discography on Vic and Debbie Ceder's website. There are numerous items in the SDHP collection related to Dick Leger.

Westchester's Famous Square Dance Expert

Article describing Elisha Keeler's approach to calling squares

Rickey Holden Interviews

These are four interviews conducted with Rickey Holden— dance caller, organizer, author, editor and publisher. He was co-author of The Contra Dance Book (1956) andInstant Hash (1962) as well as numerous articles and two books about international folk dance. He danced with Ralph Page in the Boston area in the 1940s, hitchhiked around the US…

Gloria Rios

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Jimmy Morris and Tommy Cavanagh interview

Interview with two British callers, conducted by Mildred Buhler and shared with her dancers back in California. The two men were the co-founders, president and vice-president, of the fledgling British Association of American Square Dance Clubs with which Buhler was involved when she moved to London. During the interview, Morris says, "We really try…

Bruce Johnson interview

This interview with a young Bruce Johnson-- he's 25 at the time-- was conducted by Mildred Buhler as part of her "Calling All Folk Dancers" radio program in 1950-1951. (The illustration is from 20 years later, when he's on the cover of Sets in Order.) Included here is a section near the beginning of the broadcast, which included Johnson calling a…

Masaru Wada - 2010 Milestone Award

Text of the CALLERLAB Milestone award presented to caller Masaru Wada of Japan, as well as the speech made by Mike Seastrom in presenting the award. Seastrom acknowledged, "While there are other fine leaders who have spread the joy of the square dance activity and helped it grow in Japan," Masaru Wada stands above the rest.

Bob Aylward - related items

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Bob Aylward - caller biography

This is an excerpt from an unpublished memoir by Robert Aylward, who called square dances in the Boston area, starting in the 1930s. It's a detailed portrait of the evolution of a caller.

"Wild Bill" Reagan

Duane "Wild Bill" Reagan was a square dance caller perhaps best known for his performance at the Expo 74 festival in Spokane, Washington. Featured here are two clips of his calling at that event, a live recording made by musician Pop Wagner:* Cheat or Swing* Docey Out as She Comes in(Note: Audio clips will take a while to load. They will appear…

Henry Ford Shakes a Wicked Hoof - Literary Digest, 1925

Contemporary account of Henry Ford's interest in reviving older dances.

Fiddling to Henry Ford - Literary Digest, 1926

Henry Ford attracted considerable attention when he showcased the dance fiddling of Mellie Dunham, from Maine. This lengthy contemporary account describes that relationship in detail.

"Mr. Ford aspires to revive the dances of our granddaddies, with all their innocent, neighborly cavorting, and he is going about it in the methodical, wholesale…

John and Mary Josy Bradford

John Bradford (age 13) and his sister Mary Jo (16), also known as Mary Josy to differentiate her from her mother, Mary Jo Bradford, went for the first time to Shaw's summer dance class in 1947, starting a lifelong passion for dance.

Lloyd Shaw - Christmas letters

These are three letters written as "annual belated Christmas greetings" from Lloyd and Dorothy Shaw to participants in the Cheyenne Mountain School summer classes. They provide a good sense of the Shaws' philosophy and writing.

Lloyd Shaw Fellowship - John Bradford

John Bradford was 13 years old in 1947 when his mother, Mary Jo Bradford, took their family to attend Lloyd Shaw's summer class in square dancing. (He and his sister were the only two teenagers allowed in the class, other than members of Shaw's Cheyenne Mountain Dancers.)

The author explains, "This was presented as a morning talk at the 1997…

Reminiscences of Lloyd Shaw - Mary Jo Bradford

Mary Jo Bradford was a physical education teacher in Tulsa, Oklahoma, when she encountered Lloyd Shaw and the Cheyenne Mountain Dancers in 1946. That summer, she traveled to Colorado Springs to study with Shaw, and the following summer she returned with her two teenage children.

Note: Mary Jo's daughter was also named Mary Jo and was often…

Hilton Kelly - Catskill fiddler & caller

Article about Catskills fiddler and caller Hilton Kelly, who has been playing and calling square dances in that region of New York for more than 75 years.