Square Dancing

Stuff You Missed in History Class

Square Dancing

Square dancing has very old roots and has endured as a pastime to present day. Its history, though, comes with some thorns, and scholars don’t even agree on its exact origin. 


  •         Anderson, Virginia C. “It All Began Anew: The Revival of Folk Dancing.” Western Folklore , Apr., 1948, Vol. 7, No. 2 (Apr., 1948). Via JSTOR. https://www.jstor.org/stable/1497379
  •         Blakemore, Erin. “The Slave Roots of Square Dancing.” JSTOR Daily. 6/16/2017. https://daily.jstor.org/the-slave-roots-of-square-dancing/
  •         Burger, Hans, complier. “History and Heritage of Modern American Square Dancing.” Phantom Promenaders Munich. European Association of American Square Dance. Via archive.org. https://web.archive.org/web/20040409113940/http://eaasdc.de/history/shehisto.pdf
  •         Dallal, Jenine Abboushi. “French Cultural Imperialism and the Aesthetics of Extinction.” The Yale Journal of Criticism, vol. 13 no. 2, 2000, p. 229-265. Project MUSE, doi:10.1353/yale.2000.0016.
  •         Damon, S. Foster. “History of Square Dancing.” Barre, Mass. 1957.
  •         Gifford, Paul M. “Henry Ford’s Dance Revival and Fiddle Contests: Myth and Reality.” Journal of the Society for American Music (2010) Volume 4, Number 3, pp. 307–338.
  •         Hunt, Tracie. “Birdie in the Cage.” Produced by Annie McEwen, Tracie Hunte, and Matt Kielty. Radiolab. 10/23/2019. https://radiolab.org/podcast/birdie-cage
  •         Jamison, Philip A. “Square Dance Calling: The African-American Connection.” Journal of Appalachian Studies , Fall 2003, Vol. 9, No. 2 (Fall 2003). Via JSTOR. https://www.jstor.org/stable/41446577
  •         Lovett, Benjamin B. and Henry Ford. “’Good Morning’: After a Sleep of Twenty-five Years, Old-fashioned Dancing is Being Revived by Mr. and Mrs. Henry Ford.” Dearborn Publishing Company. January 1926.
  •         Mangin, Julianne. “The State Folk Dance Conspiracy: Fabricating a National Folk Dance.” Originally published in the Old-Time Herald, v.4(7) p.9-12, Spring 1995. http://juliannemangin.com/the-state-folk-dance-conspiracy/
  •         MasterClass. “All About Square Dance: A Brief History of Square Dance.” https://www.masterclass.com/articles/square-dance-explained
  •         Miller, Rebecca S. “Creolizing Contradance in the Caribbean.” American Music, vol. 28, no. 4, winter 2010, pp. 501+. Gale In Context: U.S. History, link.gale.com/apps/doc/A401215265/GPS?u=mlin_n_melpub&sid=bookmark-GPS&xid=5ce2f07f. Accessed 1 June 2023.
  •         Nelson, Kevin. “Square Dancing.” Encyclopedia of Recreation and Leisure in America, edited by Gary S. Cross, vol. 2, Charles Scribner’s Sons, 2004, pp. 305-307. Gale In Context: U.S. History, link.gale.com/apps/doc/CX3434800241/GPS?u=mlin_n_melpub&sid=bookmark-GPS&xid=eed3a8c4. Accessed 1 June 2023.
  •         Optimist Daily. “The history of square dancing in America—part I of True American.” 8/12/2022. https://www.optimistdaily.com/2022/08/the-history-of-square-dancing-in-america-part-i-of-true-american/
  •         Optimist Daily. “The square dancers of today—part II of True American, a mini-series.” 8/19/2022. https://www.optimistdaily.com/2022/08/the-square-dancers-of-today-part-ii-of-true-american-a-mini-series/
  •         Quigley, Colin. “Reflections on the Hearing to “Designate the Square Dance as the American Folk Dance of the United States”: Cultural Politics and an American Vernacular Dance Form.” Yearbook for Traditional Music , 2001, Vol. 33 (2001). Via JSTOR. https://www.jstor.org/stable/1519639
  •         Sabatella, Matthew. “Southern Appalachian Square Dance: A Brief History.” Ballad of America. https://balladofamerica.org/southern-square-dance/
  •         Szwed, John F. and Morton Marks. “The Afro-American Transformation of European Set Dances and Dance Suites.” Dance Research Journal , Summer, 1988, Vol. 20, No. 1 (Summer, 1988). Via JSTOR. https://www.jstor.org/stable/1478814
  •         U.S. House of Representatives. “Can I have This Dance?” Whereas: Stories from the People’s House. 4/29/2020. https://history.house.gov/Blog/2020/April/4-29-squaredance/
  •         Warnock, Emery C. “The Anti-Semitic Origins of Henry Ford’s Arts Education Patronage.” Journal of Historical Research in Music Education , Apr., 2009, Vol. 30, No. 2. Via JSTOR. https://www.jstor.org/stable/40215355

See omny.fm/listener for privacy information.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *