Dancers at the square dance. Pie Town, New Mexico

Russell Lee, Pie Town, New Mexico, 1939

Among the photographs Russell Lee took during his small town study in Pie Town, New Mexico, are over 20 from a square dance held in a home. Lee makes note of one of the features of the room adapted into the dance floor: the quilting frame suspended tight to the ceiling overhead. In several of the photos, the quilting stitches are quite visible, and from one angle, the scrappy eight pointed stars pieced from printed fabric appear where the quilt has been rolled. These shots convey the community socialization aspect sought by Stryker and Lee in the small town studies, while simultaneously emphasizing the adaptability of these pioneers.


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