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"Dwight Petersen Square Dance Records" Collection

Accession Numbers



Petersen, Dwight E.

Type of Material

1,503 square dance sound recordings (45 rpm)


Physical Description

1,053 sound recordings (45 rpm)


circa 1970-1990

Abstract (Descriptive Summary)

This is a collection of square dance recordings (45 rpm). There are a few duplicates or triplicates. Many of the records include caller sheets on either the sleeve or as an insert.



The collection is open for research use. All materials in this collection are subject to standard national and international copyright laws. Center staff is able to assist with copyright questions for this material.


Provenance and Acquisition Information:

The material in this collection was given to the Center for Popular Music in July of 2014 by Dwight Petersen. Petersen visited the Center in July of 2014 as part of the Stamps Baxter School of Music at MTSU. He then contacted the Center about donating his square dance record collection. The majority of the records in this collection were purchased in bulk by the donor from widows of other callers. The collection includes a few records (less than 100) bought retail by the donor.


Subject/Index Terms

Square dance
Square dance music
Square dance music--United States
Dance music

Agency History/Biographical Sketch

Dwight Petersen is from Fredericksburg, Virginia. He was a square dance caller and therefore was able to accrue this collection of 45 rpm records.

Scope and Content

The collection contains 45rpm sound recordings of square dance music; many include caller sheets on the sleeve or as an insert. A projected 65% are "singing calls", typically well-known songs modified into a pattern with seven to nine main sections. Seven parts are generally 64 beats in length each, following an abbcbbd pattern (beginning, figure, figure, middle, figure, figure, and close). One side of the record is the caller's recording of the routine. On the other side, only the instrumental is recorded.

30% of the records are traditional tunes used for "patter" calls. Often, these records have a different melody on each side.

The remaining 5% are a variety of records, including line dance records, clogging records, popular records, etc.

The majority of the records in this collection were purchased in bulk by the donor from widows
of other callers. The collection includes a few records (less than 100) bought retail by the donor.

Collection Contents: Box/stack list

Collection Contents: (Box/stack list):

Box # Description

1 0001-0169*

2 0170-0352*

3 0353-0499* 0450-0520

4 0521-0680

5 0681-0834

6 0835-0992

7 0993-1137

8 1138-1289

9 1290-1459

10 1460-1503


*not alphabetized/numerical by issue number


Sound recordings (starting at 0450) were processed alphabetically by label and numerically by issue number.


Collection is housed with other 45rpm sound recordings under the mezzanine.


Related Materials

Other square dance holdings in the CPM collections include sound recordings, trade catalogs, books, call books, and the Anderson Memorial Presbyterian Church square dance collection.

Processed by Emily T. Boersma, September 2015.


Square dance music, Square dance, Square dance music -- United States, Dance music


Petersen, Dwight E.

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MTSU Box 41
1301 E. Main Street
Middle Tennessee State University
Murfreesboro, TN 37132

Room 140
Bragg Media & Entertainment Bldg.

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