Dancing at the Castle

While coming to work and enjoying the beautiful campus that surrounds us, it is almost impossible not to think of the Castle, above all this summer with the construction of the new wing almost completed. Due to the nature of my work, I find myself often speculating about the days gone by. How was life in the Castle when the Nickerson family lived there, and what about those first decades of the school in Dedham?

Most often than in the most recent decades, the smaller size of the schools allowed the Castle to be used for student events.  Proms used to be held at the castle, as were school dances through the year.

Last week, I came across a picture of such a dance, date unknown, but I would date it somewhere between late thirties, early forties.  As always, when I look at old pictures, my mind fills with questions.  Who are the young men and women enjoying themselves in the festive evening of long ago? What happened to them? Where are they now?

Dancing at the Castle. Date unknown.

From the wrist of every girl, a little dance card swings away. Dance card…  a convention long lost… when a young man would ask in advance a young woman to reserve a specific dance for him and, if she accepted, she would write his name on her card.

In the School Notes of the Nobleman of March 1935, we learn of the upcoming April dance and are informed that “for the benefits of those who do not know, the dance is open to members of the First and Second classes, and to lettermen of the Third.”

The Foxtrot was definitely the dance of choice!

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