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

Browse Items (32 total)

Moving Image

Elizabeth Burchenal 3 - big set demo

This appears to be a demonstration of various southern Appalachian big set figures. There are several shots of musicians scattered throughout.The film starts with the Georgia Rang Tang figure, also… View item
Sound

Big circle dance - Manny Wiener & American Square Dance Group

Caller Manny Wiener leads a big circle dance—here introduced as a Kentucky running set—with members of Margot Mayo's American Square Dance Group. This is a portion of a half hour radio… View item
Moving Image

Big Set - Berea Country Dancers, 2011

The Berea Country Dancers perform a version of the southern mountain Big Set. (Searching for that term will bring up several dozen additional Related Items.) Paul Adkins called the dance from the… View item
Document

Old Time Square Dancing on Ocracoke Island, North Carolina

Author Bob Dalsemer discovers a long tradition of the "big circle" square dance on this island off the North Carolina coast, far from the Appalachian Mountains where it is usually… View item
Document

Let's Square Dance – Claude Chadwick

This 24 page booklet was produced by Claude S. Chadwick, a Texas native and a professor of biology at Vanderbilt University in Nashville. He begins with an overview of the activity: "All we need for… View item
Document

A Tennessee Square Dance

Caller David Hendrix presents a overview of typical figures that he would use in a "square dance" in his region of East Tennessee.He notes that the dances in his region are related to the… View item
Document

Smoky Mountain Square Dance Collection

In his later years, Tennessee caller David Hendrix was working on an expanded version of his Smoky Mountain Square Dances, complete with diagrams and professional photographs. After his death, his… View item
Moving Image

Elizabeth Burchenal 2 - big set in field

Brief shot of Elizabeth Burchenal herself at the start; shots of musicians (guitar, 2 banjos, fiddle) at 2:51 Figures include: Opposite turn by right hand; partner turn by left hand; swing… View item
Moving Image

Elizabeth Burchenal 4 - big set, rooftop

In this dance, the lead couple passes around their neighbors, and while behind them passes each other by the right hand, then returns to the center of the set, swings the opposite, and moves on to the… View item
Document

Appalachian Squares

This document comes from the Dixie Folk Institute, 1951, and presents a concise description for many common figures that can be used in a big set. View item
Document

Swamp Country Dance

This is a first-person account of attending a country dance in Georgia in the mid-1950s. The author describes the big circle formation in detail: "A single dance would go like this; The… View item
Document

Appalachian Circle

A brief look at southern Appalachian circle dances. The author points out how unfamiliar four-couple squares would be to a dance from that region:---A native of the Appalachian Circle country which… View item