The show also featured square dancing. My grandmother loved Don Messer's Jubilee too but was always very shocked whenever the female dancers' skirts and crinolines would twirl up to reveal their panties. "Oh, there's no need for that sort of thing," she would tsk tsk disapprovingly.
Only Hockey Night in Canada was more popular on TV. When the CBC cancelled Don Messer's Jubilee in 1969, there was a nationwide protest and angry questions in the House of Commons.
Don Messer was such a beloved musician in this country that his violin has become a national treasure. Years after his death, his daughter personally chose the next great Maritime fiddler to be given the violin to play -- like a sacred trust -- Frank Leahy.