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Lloyd Shaw Foundation


The Lloyd Shaw Foundation was formed in 1964 in memory of square dance pioneer Lloyd Shaw to continue his mission of teaching American folk dance to people of all generations. Dorothy Shaw became a highly significant figure in the square dance world herself, lecturing widely, helping to start the Lloyd Shaw Foundation, and serving as Executive Secretary until 1979. Lloyd and Dorothy’s daughter Doli married Donald Jenkins Obee, who served as President of the Foundation from 1965 until 1979; their daughter, Enid Cocke, has served as President since August of 1979. The Lloyd Shaw Foundation was voted into existence in August of 1964, following the yearly Lloyd Shaw Summer Fellowship held at the home of Dorothy Stott Shaw in Colorado Springs, CO. It was incorporated as a nonprofit organization in Colorado Springs, and the original membership consisted of 46 dance leaders from across the United States and Canada; by 1966 there were over 140 members. The Foundation is still incorporated in the state of Colorado, but its headquarters address moved to Manhattan, Kansas in 1979. The stated purpose of the organization is to, “Recall, restore, and teach the folk rhythms of the American people.” Implicit in the mission is the additional goal of doing so in a manner consistent with the educational and dance philosophies of Lloyd Shaw. The first President of the Foundation was Don Armstrong, who served from 1964-1965; he stepped down under the conviction that a member of Lloyd Shaw’s family should serve as president. Donald Jenkins Obee, Shaw’s son-in-law, served as president from 1965 until 1979, and was followed in this position by his daughter Enid Cocke, 1979 to present. Dorothy Stott Shaw, Lloyd Shaw’s wife, served as Executive Secretary from 1964 until 1979. Although the Foundation originally drew its membership from the Lloyd Shaw Summer Fellowship attendees, and conducted its annual meeting after the close of each Fellowship until 1978, the two were never officially affiliated. The Lloyd Shaw Foundation has had significant relationships with a number of other organizations, including the United Square Dancers of America, Legacy, and CALLERLAB, The Country Dance and Song Society, the New England Square Dance Foundation, and international music distributors. In 1986 the Library of Congress named the Archives Division as a clearing house for square dance materials, and in 1987 the Archives helped form the National Dance Archives Coordinating Committee. The Lloyd Shaw Foundation’s primary functions and activities are educational; although it focuses on square and contra dancing, many other dance traditions are represented in its programs. Under the Foundation’s auspices, college credit-granting workshops were conducted at Colorado State University from 1965 until the mid-1970s, and at other universities and colleges as well; workshops and teacher training courses continue to be held around the country and internationally, and the Foundation and its members have consistently conducted presentations and dances at the request of numerous organizations. The Foundation has actively produced and revised targeted dance education kits to assist teachers in dance education since 1966, including resources designed specifically for grades from kindergarten through high school as well as special education students. Other activities have included sponsoring and running dance camps, particularly the Rocky Mountain Dance Roundup in Colorado, Cumberland Gap in Kentucky, and Terpsichore’s Holiday in West Virginia; providing scholarships for members and groups to attend various dance camps around the country and to travel internationally; and providing research and historical services through the Lloyd Shaw Dance Library and the Archives Division. The Foundation has also acted as a publisher for musical recordings and dance books, and publishes its own journal. Since 1967, members of the Board of Directors have served for a maximum of two consecutive three-year terms, with descendants and relatives of Lloyd Shaw being exempt from the term limits. From 1976 until 2004, the Archives Division existed as an independent entity within the Lloyd Shaw Foundation administrative structure, overseen by its director and the Executive Directors. The Foundation maintained an office for its mailing operations in Lakewood, CO from 1972 until they were moved to Albuquerque, NM in 1988, where they shared facilities with the Archives Division. The Archives Division was disbanded after its materials were donated to the University of Denver in 2003. In 1972 the Lloyd Shaw Foundation Dance Archives was started by Mary D Walsh. At the time, it consisted of a single 8mm film of E.S. “Red“ Henderson calling for his Spokane, Washington-based performance group, the Silver Spurs. In August of 1976 the Foundation’s Board of Directors voted to create an official Archives Division; Dr. Litchman was appointed Director, under the direction of the Executive Committee. By December the Archives was offering photocopies, research services, and a tape recording service; the organizational newsletter, the “Long Shadow,” actively solicited donations of both money and materials. In 1978 the Board of Directors voted to provide an operating budget and funds for acquisitions. Prior to and even after the formation of the Archives researchers had access to the Lloyd Shaw Dance Library, which consisted of Lloyd Shaw’s personal collection, at the home of Dorothy Shaw in Colorado Springs, CO. Some of these resources were later incorporated into the Archives, but many remained in the possession of the family. The Archives was housed at Dr. Litchman’s home in Albuquerque, NM until 1982. In 1982 it was shifted into a renovated chicken coop, and moved again in 1988 to a local dance studio purchased by the Foundation. Dr. Litchman began negotiations to permanently move the Lloyd Shaw Foundation Dance Archives to the University of Denver in 2002, and the transition was completed in 2003.

Found in 135 Collections and/or Records:

Box 26: Square Dance Costumes

 File — Box: D096.0026
Identifier: D096.01.0026
Overview This box contains three (3) men's shirts and two (2) skirts.

Box 27: Square Dance Costumes

 File — Box: D096.0027
Identifier: D096.01.0027
Overview This box contains square dance clothing including: (1) blue paisley dress, (2) men's checkered shirts, (1) skirt, (1) polka-dot blue dress with belt, and (1) top with underwear.

Box 28: Square Dance Costumes

 File — Box: D096.0028
Identifier: D096.01.0028
Overview This box contains square dance clothing including: (4) kid's skirts, (2) kid's tops, and (1) red women's outfit.

Box 29: Square Dance Costumes

 File — Box: D096.0029
Identifier: D096.01.0029
Overview This box contains square dance clothing including skirts, blouses, and dresses.

Box 3: Nyla and Russ Farr, 1968-1974

 File — Box: D096.0031
Identifier: D096.06.0031
Overview This box contains materials from Nyla and Russ Farr. Items in this box includes: (1) folder of dance materials from dances called by Russ Farr; (2) folders of Russ Farr Memorial materials; (7) items of caller teaching materials collected by Nyla Farr; (13) items of workshop materials; (35) photographs; (23) newspaper clippings; (8) Nyla's square dance design drafts; one (1) award; one (1) flag, and one (1) dance flyer; and one (1) box of conference/workshop/convention badges.

Box 3: Scrapbooks, 1975-1986

 File — Box: D100.0003
Identifier: D100.01.0003
Overview This box contains scrapbooks from the Star Promenaders Square Dance club including the 1975-1984 scrapbook and the 1986 binder.

Box 3: Square Dance Costumes

 File — Box: D096.0003
Identifier: D096.01.0003
Overview This box contains square dance costumes including: four (4) scarves, one (1) poncho shawl thing, one (1) beaded two-piece skirt/shirt costume, one (1) red skirt, one (1) blue skirt, one (1) red skirt, one (1) black skirt, and one (1) blue and black skirt.

Box 30: Square Dance Costumes

 File — Box: D096.0030
Identifier: D096.01.0030
Overview This box contains square dance costumes including: (1) denim outfit (top and skirt), (1) pink cotton outfit (top and skirt), (1) brown and tan outfit (top and skirt), and (1) red polka dot dress.

Box 33: 19th Century and Ragtime Dance Workshop-Dallas Convention

 File — Box: D096.0033
Identifier: D096.03.0033
Overview This box contains materials from square and folk dance workshops, festivals, and conferences. This box contains materials from: 19th Century and Ragtime Dance Workshop; 31st Halloween Pamphlet; AAADS: A Weekend of Hope; Abilene Square Dance Day; Aggie Haylofters Round Dance Workshop; Al Brundage Goes to Nassau; All American City Square Dance Festival; All American Square Dance Festival; Aman Annual Institute; American Institute of Electrical Engineers Annual Dinner Dance; American Society of...

Box 34: Dance Masters of America-Folk Dance Institute

 File — Box: D096.0034
Identifier: D096.08.0034
Overview This box contains materials from square and folk dance workshops, festivals, and conferences. This box includes: Dance Master of America; Dance Teahcer Magazine Conference; Danish Day's Federation Festival; Dancer's Association of Northern California; Delaware Valley Square Dance Convention; Dennis Boxell Institute; Denver Square Dance Callers Association Workshop; Dick Crum Institue of Balkan Dances; Dixie Folk and Square Dance Institute; DLDV Contra; Double E Round Up; Duluth Folk Dance...