Dance Queen is Born
On this day in 1906, Gussie Nell Davis was born in Farmersville, Texas. She went on to gain fame as the organizer and leader of the Kilgore Rangerettes, the innovative dance-drill team at Kilgore College. First performing in 1940, the group achieved international recognition under Davis’s direction and appeared at such heralded events as President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s Inauguration and several Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parades. The Rangerettes graced the covers of Life, Newsweek, the Saturday Evening Post, and other magazines. Davis guided the group until her retirement in 1979, and she served as a consultant for drill teams across the nation. This drill team pioneer was honored with induction into the Texas Women’s Hall of Fame in 1989.