Social registries have been around since the 1800s, logging the names of the elite, the protective pulp that sifts out the highborn from the hoi polloi. Dallas has seen a few iterations over the years, but the recognized registry among the old guard remains The Dallas Social Directory, now in its 39th printing. Weighing in at about a pound and a half, the royal blue book features contact information, as well as social memberships and business affiliations. It’s a handy resource and a sizzling read for socially motivated types who can manage to get their hands on a copy.
But hold onto your Birkin. There’s a new book in town, The Dallas Social Register. You haven’t heard of it? Same goes for some of the bold names listed in the similarly titled directory, including Dallas-born socialite Janie Condon (granddaughter of Henry S. Miller Jr.) and D’Andra Simmons (CEO, philanthropist, and reality TV personality). Nancy Rogers, whose social network knows no geographic bounds, hadn’t heard of it either. Neither had the six friends she called.
According to its bare-bones website, the original Register was in publication from the 1930s to the late ’80s. The new founder, a Highland Park-born “businessman, philanthropist, and socialite who wishes to remain anonymous,” relaunched the title in 2016. He’s as elusive as a spot in his book. Repeated requests for information went unanswered.
Do we really need two highfalutin hardcovers duking it out for domination? Apparently so. Says the site’s homepage: “The new Dallas Social Register was established to help socialites from Dallas, Irving, Plano, Frisco, and McKinney connect with each other.” But not Addison?
For those still interested, induction onto this phantom roll requires the nominations of seven members. Best of luck finding them.
The Social Climber’s Quiz
Want your name in The Dallas Social Directory? See if you have what it takes.
1. Who was not an Idlewild Deb?
a) Rachel Stanzel Trowbridge
b) Merry Munson Wyatt
c) D’Andra Simmons
2. LPAHC stands for?
3. How many times can a candidate be put up for the Cattle Baron’s Ball committee?
c) three times a cowgirl
d) there’s no limit
4. A society doyenne would never:
a) fail to RSVP to an event
b) be pictured in the same dress twice
c) pose for a photo facing straight on
5. Dervish is:
a) a dance performed at Sweetheart Ball
b) the week preceding Crystal Charity Ball’s Ten Best Dressed Luncheon
c) a cocktail containing absinthe and Champagne
d) a social club for post-collegiate men
6. Who said, “You don’t want to go making friends with the wrong sort”?
(all 6) You’re well on your way to social stardom—or at least on the right path to finding a rich husband.
(3–5) You know people who know people. Someday you’ll make it into the social pages. They may even spell your name correctly.
(0–2) You’re likely to move to the suburbs, but you’ll have a kick-ass lake house and a media room that’s the envy of all your neighbors.
- c) D’Andra was a Dallas Symphony Orchestra Debutante.
- Lee Park & Arlington Hall Conservancy (soon to have a name change?)
- c) three
- all of the above
- d) a social club for post-collegiate men
- Harry Potter character Draco Malfoy, pure-blood wizard and member of Slytherin House