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Ludie Jones

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Information about Ludie Jones

Profile image of Ludie Jones

Profession

Category:
ArtMakers
Occupation(s):
Dancer
Dance Instructor

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue
Favorite Food:
Spaghetti, Sausage
Favorite Time of Year:
Winter
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Bahamas
Favorite Quote:
I'm Good.

Birthplace

Born:
1/28/1916
Birth Location:
New York, New York

Profession

Category:
ArtMakers
Occupation(s):
Dancer
Dance Instructor

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue
Favorite Food:
Spaghetti, Sausage
Favorite Time of Year:
Winter
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Bahamas
Favorite Quote:
I'm Good.

Birthplace

Born:
1/28/1916
Birth Location:
New York
See how Ludie Jones is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Ludie Jones is a renowned tap-dancer, famous for her performances in the era of prohibition. She was born on January 28, 1916 in New York City to Lottie and Luther Jones, a family of seven. Jones was introduced to tap in the form of the Charleston at age three. Her mother enrolled her in dance lessons at Elks Hall. At age eleven, she was asked by Amanda Kemp, a ballet teacher, to teach tap dance to her students.

In 1934, Jones graduated from Wadleigh High School for Girls and began touring around England with the chorus line of “Lew Leslie’s Blackbirds of ’34.” Upon returning to the U.S., Jones immediately became a member of “The Lang Sisters” along with Marion Worthy and Peggy Wharton. The three of them attended Buddy Bradley’s School of Dancing in London and began working with Louis Armstrong at the Paramount Theatre in New York.

By 1941 “The Lang Sisters” had disbanded so Jones formed the group “The Three Poms” with Sybil Warner and Geraldine Ball. As a group, they were the opening act for the Cab Calloway Band. “The Three Poms” also did shows for troops during World War II in Okinawa, Japan, and the Phillipines before breaking up in the early 1950’s. In 1984, Jones was asked to join the musical “Shades of Harlem” and they toured internationally. That same year, she and Ruby Riley began teaching senior citizens how to dance at the Kennedy Center in Harlem. They called themselves the “Tapping Seniors."

In 2008, Jones was honored at the St. Louis Tap Festival and was given an award on behalf of the Robert L. Reed Tap Heritage Foundation. Two years later, she continued to teach with the “Tapping Seniors” and has been an active member of the Central Harlem Senior Citizens Coalition since 1984. Jones has been featured in many books including Tap Dancing America: A Cultural History by Constance Valis Hill.

Jones passed away on October 3, 2018.

Ludie Jones was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on April 26, 2010.

See how Ludie Jones is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Ludie Jones' interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Ludie Jones lists her favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Ludie Jones describes her mother's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Ludie Jones describes her mother's move to New York City
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Ludie Jones describes her father's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Ludie Jones talks about her parents' relationship
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Ludie Jones lists her siblings
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Ludie Jones describes the Phipps Houses in New York City
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Ludie Jones remembers the entertainment of her youth
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Ludie Jones describes the sights, sounds and smells of her childhood
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Ludie Jones recalls her start as a dancer
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Ludie Jones remembers one of her early dance performances
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Ludie Jones remembers the entertainers of her childhood
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Ludie Jones describes her educational experiences in New York City
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Ludie Jones remembers auditioning for 'Lew Leslie's Blackbirds of 1934'
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Ludie Jones recalls touring Europe with 'Lew Leslie's Blackbirds of 1934'
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Ludie Jones remembers the stars of 'Lew Leslie's Blackbirds of 1934'
  • Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Ludie Jones describes the formation of the Lang Sisters
  • Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Ludie Jones talks about the Lang Sisters' performances
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Ludie Jones remembers performing with notable jazz bandleaders
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Ludie Jones remembers touring with the Lang Sisters
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Ludie Jones talks about Bill "Bojangles" Robinson
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Ludie Jones remembers touring with the United Service Organizations
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Ludie Jones remembers her tap dance contemporaries, pt. 1
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Ludie Jones remembers her tap dance contemporaries, pt. 2
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Ludie Jones talks about her favorite tap dancers
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Ludie Jones reflects upon the decline of tap dancing
  • Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Ludie Jones describes how she came to work for the New York Telephone Company
  • Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Ludie Jones remembers dancing in 'Shades of Harlem'
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Ludie Jones recalls her experiences in France and the U.S. Virgin Islands
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Ludie Jones remembers being asked to tour with the 'Shades of Harlem'
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Ludie Jones remembers the Ludie Jones Day celebration in St. Louis, Missouri
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Ludie Jones reflects upon the changes in dance and music
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Ludie Jones describes her hopes and concerns for the African American community
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Ludie Jones reflects upon her life
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Ludie Jones reflects upon her legacy
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Ludie Jones describes how she would like to be remembered
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Ludie Jones narrates her photographs, pt. 1
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Ludie Jones narrates her photographs, pt. 2
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Ludie Jones narrates her photographs, pt. 3
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Ludie Jones narrates her photographs, pt. 4