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Community dances is the answer us for Week 386 of Orofino History Trivia a special feature to celebrate the history and heritage of Clearwater Country.

Join in the discovery!

Monday: Music

Tuesday: Brought the family

Wednesday: A break from the ordinary

Thursday: Most often in winter

Thursday: Most of the musicians were self-taught.

Early homesteaders in the area started work before dawn and finished after dusk and there seemed to be no end to chores. But especially during the winter, there had to be more and community dances were a big part of that.

In his history of Clearwater County, John Bradbury records that families gathered up the children and headed out in horse pulled sleighs in the winter. They often were covered with rugs and quilts with warmed bricks inside so they could stay warm.

When they arrived at the dance site, they would put the younger children to bed. Then the rugs would be rolled up and music begin. The musicians were local and most self-taught. Fred Judd was one of those renowned for his fiddle playing. His son Lawrence would later follow suit with the fiddle and harmonica. Folks would dance through the night and as the dawn approached hitch up the horses, gather the kids and return to their farms.

Sated by a night of good old-fashioned 'hoe-down' they would go to bed and in the morning return to their labors.

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Window on the Clearwater
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