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

Traditional western

Dublin Core

Title

Traditional western

Description

Dances of the Rocky Mountain region and the Southwest

Items in the Traditional western Collection (12/103)

Moving Image

Chinese Fan - Lisa Greenleaf

This clip only shows the actual Chinese Fan part of the dance. Omitted are the opening figures, breaks, and the ending. The dance is usually done with dancers linking elbows; here, the caller simply… View item
Still Image

Square dance photos, Austin, TX, 1948

Two photographs taken at a square dance in Austin, TX View item
Document

Ladies to the Center

This short article by Texas dance historian Olcutt Sanders looks at the role played by women in that state's dance history. Sanders notes the early absence of women: "A scarcity of woman… View item
Document

Herb Greggerson bio

This profile of El Paso caller Herb Greggerson was written in 1946. It mentions Greggerson's Blue Bonnet Set heading off on their first US tour in 1939; this was after the team triumphed over Bob… View item
Sound

Chain Lightning - Butch Nelson (clip)

Another example of Butch Nelson's calling, with fast-paced patter keeping dancers moving briskly. Again, the patter clearly shows the caller's western roots. "And the coyotes howl… View item
Sound

Half Sashay - Butch Nelson (clip)

"Pull up your pants and tighten the tracesAll join hands, we're off to the races."With opening patter like this, we know we're in traditional western square dance territory. Thirty seconds later, when… View item
Sound

Sally Goodin variations

Sally Goodin is a square dance based on picturesque names for the other dancers in your set. (See Carl Herzog diagram). The active dance turns other dancers in a particular sequence, occasionally… View item
Document

Rural Leaders' Guide for Square and Group Dances, 1951

From the forward: "This circular is designed to assist rural leaders in teaching square and group dancing and in conducting organized recreational dancing activities." After several pages of… View item
Document

Syllabus of Square Dances, Rickey Holden 1949

This is a syllabus created by Rickey Holden for a callers' workshop held in San Antonio in 1949. The course was 2-1/2 hours each night for five days. It's a useful primary source document showing the… View item
Document

"The Good Ole Days" - Olcutt Sanders, 1949

Dance historian Olcutt Sanders asks, "As you unwound yourself from the mazes of the latest square dance concoction introduced at your club meeting, did your ever wonder how people ever got along… View item
Moving Image

Suzy Q - Grand Cuttyshaw - Rickey Holden

Holden's name for this dance was the Grand Cuttyshaw, which he published as "traditional New Mexico" in his 1992 booklet, "Square Dances of West Texas." A note there reads, "This traditional figure,… View item
Moving Image

Texas Whirlwind - Rickey Holden

Holden teaches the figures, starting with a review of Catch All Eight, a traditional figure from West Texas that became part of modern square dance: right hand turn halfway around, then left hand turn… View item