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Sets in Order archive

The complete collection of Sets in Order (which changed its name to Square Dancing in 1968) is available online through the University of Denver. The issues were scanned by New Jersey dance caller Gardner Patton. You can read more in this interview of Gardner Patton conducted by Bob Brundage in 2011. The complete run of the magazine was 444 issues.…

Auctioneer (remake - clip) - Marshall Flippo

This is a remake in the 1970s by Marshall Flippo of his big hit. For this version, he changed the choreography to reflect changes in MWSD, and the music also has a very different sound. This is Blue Star 1825, with music by the Shannonaires band.

transcription from Jeff Garbutt, an Australian participant on the sd-callers listserv

THE.…

Lancers Quadrille - Pennsylvania

The Lancers is a form of quadrille dating from the 19th century. It appears in many communities throughout the western world. Here is a version (filmed in Super-8 by Bob Dalsemer, September, 1979) that was kept alive in Independence, PA, in the southwestern part of the state.Dalsemer's detailed description of the dance figures, and music…

Red River Valley

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Dip and Dive

Other examples of the dip and dive figure can be found on this website.

Birdie in the Cage

The well-known Birdie in the Cage figure, filmed in western Pennsylvania, on the border between northern and southern Appalachian styles of square dancing.

Butterfly Whirl

Filmed in Super-8 by Bob Dalsemer, May, 1979, at the Vandalia Gathering, an annual festival in Charleston, WV, sponsored by the West Virginia Department of Culture and History. These dancers are from Glenville, WV, which now hosts the annual West Virginia Folk Festival, which begins the 3rd Thursday in June each year. There's dancing each year on a…

Take a Little Peek

Filmed in Super-8 by Bob Dalsemer, May, 1979, at the Vandalia Gathering, an annual festival in Charleston, WV, sponsored by the West Virginia Department of Culture and History. These dancers are from Glenville, WV, which now hosts the annual West Virginia Folk Festival, which begins the 3rd Thursday in June each year. There's dancing each year on a…

Chase the Rabbit

Filmed by Bob Dalsemer in Independence, Pennsylvania

Duck for the Oyster / Grapevine Twist

This square incorporates two well-known figures.Filmed in Super-8 by Bob Dalsemer, May, 1979, at the Vandalia Gathering, an annual festival in Charleston, WV, sponsored by the West Virginia Department of Culture and History. These dancers are from Glenville, WV, which now hosts the annual West Virginia Folk Festival, which begins the 3rd Thursday…

Square dancing, Berea, KY - c. 1950 style

The footage was taken and posted by John Ramsay, who writes: "The Jackson family in Berea, Kentucky got a group together to demonstrate the type of square dancing which was danced by local citizens around 1950. I shot the footage at the Jackson home in Berea sometime between 1974-1976. The three daughters begin by step dancing/ hoedown/ clogging.…

Bruce Johnson - Hash - Rubber Dolly (clip)

View full record for details.

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Square Dancing at Maryland Line

Bob Dalsemer describes old time square dancing at the Maryland Line Fire Hall in the town of Maryland Line, MD as he encountered it in 1974.You may also be interested in a similar article describing four dances in East Tennessee, published in 1981.

Maryland Line Square Dance, 1974: Little Brown Jug (Birdie In the Cage)

Recorded by Bob Dalsemer, January 5, 1974 at the Maryland Line Fire Hall, Maryland Line, MD.
Caller: Donald "Jake" Jacoby
Band: The Saw Mill Boys

This visiting couple square has a quick progression, whereby the next couple starts its round when the previous couple is visiting its last couple. There is no middle break. Note the Southern dosido…

Bile Them Cabbage Down (Duck and Dive) - Donald "Jake" Jacoby

Recorded by Bob Dalsemer, January 5, 1974 at the Maryland Line Fire Hall, Maryland Line, MD.
Caller: Donald "Jake" Jacoby
Band: The Saw Mill Boys

Note that when couples 1 and 3 lead the figure, the duck and dive action is "across the side" and when 2 and 4 lead, the action is "across the lead." This stems from the caller's sometime numbering…

Golden Slippers - Donald "Jake" Jacoby

Recorded by Bob Dalsemer, January 5, 1974 at the Maryland Line Fire Hall, Maryland Line, MD.
Caller: Donald "Jake" Jacoby
Band: The Saw Mill Boys

This a standard "divide the ring" figure. It is also a mixer. At the end of each round, everyone does a do-si-do with their partner and swings their corner. The corner swings in this dance were done…

Maryland Line Square Dance, 1974: Jitterbug Square (Pistol Packin' Mama)

Recorded by Bob Dalsemer, January 5, 1974 at the Maryland Line Fire Hall, Maryland Line, MD.
Caller: Donald "Jake" Jacoby
Band: The Saw Mill Boys

This visiting couple square has a quick progression, whereby the next couple starts its round when the previous couple is visiting its last couple. There is no middle break. In the figure, the two…

Listen to the Mockingbird (Birdie in the Cage) - Donald "Jake" Jacoby

Recorded by Bob Dalsemer, January 5, 1974 at the Maryland Line Fire Hall, Maryland Line, MD.
Caller: Donald "Jake" Jacoby
Band: The Saw Mill Boys

This visiting couple square has a quick progression, whereby the next couple starts its round when the previous couple is visiting its last couple. There is no middle break. Note the Southern dosido…

Pistol Packin' Mama (Six Hands Forward Up and Back) - Donald "Jake" Jacoby

Recorded by Bob Dalsemer, January 5, 1974 at the Maryland Line Fire Hall, Maryland Line, MD.
Caller: Donald "Jake" Jacoby
Band: The Saw Mill Boys

This popular and widespread old time square dance figure is sometimes called Forward Six and Back or Right Hand High and Left Hand Low.

Sugarfoot Rag (Swing Ma, Swing Pa) - Donald "Jake" Jacoby

Recorded by Bob Dalsemer, January 5, 1974 at the Maryland Line Fire Hall, Maryland Line, MD.
Caller: Donald "Jake" Jacoby
Band: The Saw Mill Boys

This dance features lots of swinging! Starting with the first couple, lady number one goes to the couple on the right, swings the lady of that couple (Ma) then the gent (Pa) and then her own partner…