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

Browse Items (178 total)

  • Subject is exactly "Transitional/Western 1950s"
Moving Image

Square Dance in the American West
Documentary film

Each year, Special Collections at the University of Denver library mounts a special exhibit to showcase some portion of their materials. In 2018, square dance was the focus, drawing on the… View item
Document

Advancing in Dancing  – Mary and Fred Collette

This is a lengthy syllabus describing some 400 dances, along with occasional commentary. It appears to represent a program presented by the Collettes, Ralph Page, and Don Armstrong at a Dixie Folk… View item
Moving Image

Colorado Double Star

The double square was started by the Aggie Haylofters at Colorado State University in the 1950's as a dance formation for exhibition square dancing; The double square was danced by the Aggie… View item
Sound

Frazee's Nightmare - Les Gotcher, 1954

Commercial recordings bring us excellent sound quality and precise calling. In contrast, one of the delights of live recordings is hearing the caller deal with real-life challenges on the dance floor.… View item
Sound

Eight to the Center - Les Gotcher, 1954

This live recording comes from a Les Gotcher Square Dance Institute. You'll note that Gotcher starts the music while squares are still forming up; he calls out that another couples is needed in the… View item
Still Image

Astro-Nauts and Convair Hoedowners

This set of pictures is from two clubs in San Diego, CA whose members were involved with two plants run by General Dynamics Corporation. The timeline is late 1950’s through late 1960’s. This was… View item
Sound

Don't Let the Stars Get in Your Eyes - Selmer Hovland

This singing square is based on a popular song of the day. Don't Let the Stars Get in Your Eyes" was written in 1952 and appeared in several country versions and a #1 hit in a pop version by… View item
Sound

Spinning Wheel - Selmer Hovland, 1954

Excerpt from another live recording of Selmer Hovland at Kirkwood Lodge View item
Sound

Middle of the Mound - Selmer Hovland, patter

This is a live recording of Selmer Hovland, from Wagon Mound, New Mexico, calling at Kirkwood Lodge, Missouri. Hovland was a staff member at a Square Dance Institute that featured Les Gotcher. (One of… View item
Document

Les Gotcher choreography, 1958

The transcription is shown here; you can hear audio clip under Additional Files. If you open that audio in a separate tab, you can listen while you follow along the text.Jim Mayo: "Les Gotcher was… View item
Document

Duluth Stomp (original choreo)

Original description of Duluth Stomp View item
Moving Image

Duluth Stomp

Square dance figure originally created by Lloyd Yesberger (Duluth, MN) and published in Sets in Order, March, 1953. Caller Jim Saxe took the dance and modified it, keeping the key figure, the series… View item