The Moravian Hall, at 2300 CR 316, Jarrell, was built in 1913. The area used to be called Theon, then New Corn Hill. This area has an interesting history.
We were looking for the now closed Possum Creek Dance hall, when we saw the marque for the Moravian hall. The old Possum Creek site had an historical marker that mentioned the formation of Beef Clubs. People would butcher meat on a monthly basis and share it with the community. Because there wasn’t refrigeration, the meat was usually consumed within a short time period. If you are from around here, you’ve heard of and probably had Mikeska’s BBQ. The Mikeska’s were some of the original butchers from this Beef Club.
We made a date with some friends to meet up and dance at the Moravian hall. The entrance to the hall is in the back of the building. Parking is in the dirt, under the trees. Fortunately it hadn’t been raining earlier, so the ground was fairly dry.
The night of the dance, there was a grill going and we could smell hamburgers cooking as we walked up. Our friends later declared these the best burgers they have had at a dance. The hall was already packed with many of the tables reserved when we walked in. Our friends had arrived earlier and snagged an open table. There were fluorescent lights and strings of bulb lights on the ceiling, with bulb lights encased in mesh in some areas, to give a nice glow. The fluorescents were turned off during the music. There was adequate ventilation and most of the ceiling fans were in operation. At one point, someone opened some of the windows and we could see the sheer curtains gently blowing.
The ceiling had long narrow boards running the length of the hall. Many children were also running the length of the hall and outside around the trees. As the hall filled up, it looked like there were as many children as adults at this venue. That’s the purpose of old dance halls – to bring the family and visit with neighbors. In the photo below you can see the image of a fast moving child.
The band was Kenny Orts, a local favorite. He kept people dancing one step and triple two, with a few waltz numbers to keep it interesting. At one point there was a proposal on the floor – she said yes!
As dancers, we wear our slick soled shoes and liked the floor. As outsiders, we didn’t realize they sprinkled the floor with waxed dust and the floor became very slick for us. We noticed rest of the dancers on the floor were wearing rubber sole boots or sneakers. They didn’t have any trouble on the floor at all! We decided we all needed to keep an old pair of sneakers in our boot bags for occasions like this!
We all enjoyed the dance floor, the friendly people, the food, the music and most of all the opportunity to dance on a floor with history..