Academic journal article Folk Music Journal

Morris Dancers & Rose Queens, Vol. 2: An Anthology of Reported Carnivals and Galas in West Lancashire 1900 to 1909

Academic journal article Folk Music Journal

Morris Dancers & Rose Queens, Vol. 2: An Anthology of Reported Carnivals and Galas in West Lancashire 1900 to 1909

Article excerpt

J. Haslett. Leyland: Fairhaven Press, 2013. Limited edition [pounds sterling]. Illus. 137.50.

I had the pleasure of reviewing the first volume showcasing Johnny Haslett's extensive research into the morris dance and related traditions in West Lancashire prior to 1900 M the 2008 issue of this journal. Very much a solo labour of love, if the project had ceased at that point it would have been sufficient to elevate him into the upper echelon of scholarship. But we can be grateful that his enthusiasm has carried him through sufficient further research to allow a second volume, this one as large and impressive as its predecessor: a handsome-looking hardback, printed on good-quality, heavy-duty stock, and containing hundreds of reports extracted from local newspapers published during the decade 1900 to 1909. These range from the eight-line advertisement for a forthcoming event through to reportage spanning three or more pages of the present work (e.g. the detailed account of the Bootle Annual Celebration of 1908, on pp. 253-55). The themes that were observable during the final decade of the nineteenth century, as chronicled in volume one-namely the permeating influence of the impulse towards things Olde English-are continued here in a wider and more extensive manner: 'MORRIS DANCING, as in Ye Olden Time', as an. advertisement for an earlier Bootle event gives it (p. 1). Every town of any size, it seems, organized its annual celebration, with morris dancing, processions, competitions, maypole dancing, and numerous other activities in prominent positions.

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

The morris dance sets in this time and place were often comprised of children or teenagers, of either or both sexes--the Lancaster Prize Medal Morris Dancers of 1907, for example, were formed of fifty 'little folk' (p. 243)--and the variety of dress as depicted in the fine array of photographs presumably reflects parental influence and sewing ability. Any composition, it appears, was acceptable to organizer and spectator alike. 'Tenders required for Troupe of Morris Dancers, Juvenile or Adult', reads an advertisement for the impending Club Day in Poulton in 1909 (p. 287). Teams were organized at state and industrial school and church hall, at friendly and cooperative society, and at 'Father Nugent's Boys' Refuge' (p. 11). …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.