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Gary Ellison interview

This is an interview conducted by Nathaniel Lucy as part of his research for his master's thesis, "Ozark Jubilee: The Impact of a Revional Identity at a Crossroads," written in 2014. The subject of the interview is Gary Ellison, who explains, "In 1959 and in 1960, the last two years, I was the square dance caller for the Wagon Wheelers, which was…

Square Dancers from Ava, Missouri, 1989

These two clips show dancers from the Missouri Ozarks with the characteristic jig stepping of that region.The first clip features Edna Davis as caller.In the second clip, Steve Hall isaccompanied by Kenny Applebee of Rush Hill and Nolan Sutton of Salem. They are playing Liberty and Ragtime Annie for square dancers from Ava and Rolla.

Jubilee U.S.A. square dancers, 3 - Ozark

This clip features a straightforward Right Hand High and Left Hand Low, but done at a dizzying tempo-- 172 beats per minute!

Jubilee U.S.A. square dancers, 2 - Ozark

Early on, this clip features Ladies Star while gents promenade, then allemande left and Gents Star while ladies promenade. Later, the dancers move into lines of three dancers at the sides with long gents at the heads, but instead of doing a simple Right Hand High and Left Hand Low, the sides do a Triple Duck (1:06) figure to send ladies to the head…

Jubilee U.S.A. square dancers, 1 - Ozark

This clip features Sides Divide while head couples circle in the center of the ring and do a doceydo. The tempo is fast-- 164 beats per minute-- but #3 in this series is even faster!

The Ozark Jubilee and its successor (starting in 1958) Jubilee U.S.A. broadcast from Springfield, Missouri, and always featured a square dance segment as well as…

Texas Star - Mike Rogers, Wien, Missouri, 1994

The caller is 92-year-old Mike Rogers, patter calling at a jam session and square dance held at Wien (Chariton County in north central Missouri) in 1994. There's close-up footage of Rogers starting at 2:15, 3:45 and 7:20. He changes the calls about halfway through, to two gents allemande followed by a doceydo figure. Fiddlers include Nile Wilson…

Square Dance, McIntosh County, Oklahoma – 1939/40

A series of color slides taken by Russell Lee at an Oklahoma dance in 1939 or 1940. More information about the first one can be found here. A larger sample of the photographs is available here at the Denver Post website and the complete set of color images is on Flickr. Detailed information about the photos and their background is here on the…

Push Pa, Shove Ma (clip) - Caroline Oakley

Caroline Oakley, Portland, Oregon, learned to call from her mentor, Bill Martin. Here she is as a beginning caller in a piece by Oregon Public Broadcasting. In this audio clip, she's leading the figure, "Push Pa, Shove Ma."

Ozark Square Dance, 1949 - newspaper article

Newspaper article (1949) describing dance traditions in Arkansas; includes references to local square dance patter.

Old-Time Dancing Traditions in Missouri

Old-Time Dancing Traditions in Missouri

Ozarks - Old Time Fiddling

Article about Ozark fiddling traditions, including a long section on fiddler Bob Holt, heard playing on videos elsewhere on this site.

Old-Time Ozark Square Dancing

This is a detailed journal article from 1974, now available on the web. It includes a general discussion of Ozark dancing, interviews, photographs, diagrams, and descriptions of two dozen figures and dances, including lots of patter. "Square dancing and round dancing were the two kinds of dancing in the rural areas of the Ozarks in earlier days.…