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"That Lively
Gaited Sworray"
What is "That Lively Gaited Sworray"?


80th Consecutive Re-Enactment
"The Texas Cowboys' Christmas Ball"
of 
Anson, Texas
   Back in 1885, there wasn't much in Anson but a few dirt roads, some cowhands and the Star Hotel, which was a fine hotel for its day. But Star Hotel operator M. G. Rhodes had big ideas, and one of them was to host a Grand Ball at his hotel for entertainment for the cowhands of the area. He picked the weekend just before Christmas and began to spread the word among the cowhands about the Ball at his hotel.
   No one had any idea back in 1885 that anyone in the year 2014 would still be dancing to "Home on the Range," or swinging around the dance floor to such traditional dances as the Virginia Reel or the Cotton-Eyed Joe or anything else.
   But they've been doing it now for 80 years, ever since 1934 when a group of women in Anson decided to re-creat the original Ball that was held at the old Star Hotel in 1885. It's hard to believe, but 129 years later, the old West is still alive in Anson, Texas.

The Texas Cowboys' Christmas Ball Association is proud to announce that the Texas Historical Commission has designated the legendary Texas Cowboys' Christmas Ball and Pioneer Hall as an Official Texas Historical Event and Site to promote historic preservation and the celebration of Texas history.

The Historical Marker Dedication Ceremony 
 held at
Pioneer Hall, 1:00 P.M., 
Saturday, March 6, 2010, 
2300 Avenue G
Anson, Texas 79501.











The Ball originated in 1885 to honor area cowboys, their ladies and families.That first Ball was held in Anson's Star Hotel, which was later destroyed by fire. Pioneer Hall, in Anson, was built solely for the Ball  with construction completed in 1940. The Ball has been held there ever since.  It is memorialized by the famous Larry Chittenden poem, "The Cowboys' Christmas Ball" ( Ranch  Verses, 1893, Knickerbocker Press, New York ), as well as by the large mural ( circa 1930's ) in the U.S. Post Office at Anson, and the original 1936 water color painting, by the late Maxine Walker Perini,  on permanent display at Abilene's Grace Museum. 
 

The annual re-enactment of this 1885 Ball is open to the public and held the Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights the weekend  before December 25th.


Pioneer Hall, Anson Texas
The Texas Cowboys' Christmas Ball Association is a non-profit, public charity corporation organized in 1937 under Texas law, tax exempt under section 501 (c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code , and composed of non-paid members who contribute their time, service, and resources to maintain Pioneer Hall and conduct the annual 3 day Cowboys' Christmas Ball. 
All donations to the Association are tax deductable.


Historical Marker
Original  Water Color
 circa 1936
by
Maxine Walker Perini
Click the link below for more history about "The Texas Cowboys' Christmas Ball".
"That Lively Gaited Sworray" 
The 1885 rules remain in effect requiring ladies to wear dresses on the dance floor, 
and gentlemen to check their hats and spurs.