Bill Newcomb's Jig

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BILL NEWCOMB'S JIG. American, "Straight Jig" (2/4 time). A Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AB. Edward Le Roy Rice's book Monarchs of Minstrelsy (1911) has this entry on Newcomb:

W.W. Newcomb (Coomb) was one of the best known performers of minstrelsy. As a boy he traveled with circuses. In the late (18)40's he formed a partnership with Bije Thayer, of Boston, and successfully conducted a minstrel company about four years. He made his first New York appearance in December, 1851; subsequently playing with Fellowe's Minstrels, and later Wood's Minstrels, in New York, with whom he remained until July, 1853. That same year he went with Campbell's Minstrels, and continued four years with them. In 1857 with Hy. Rumsey he organized Rumsey and Newcomb's Minstrels, playing in the United States, Canada, Cuba, England and Germany. The organization broke up in London in the Spring of 1862. Mr. Newcomb and Eph. Horn organized a company the following year; Mr. Horn soon dropped out and Newcomb's Minstrels continued until 1871. April 17 that year Newcomb and Arlington's Minstrels opened in New York on the site of the present Fifth Avenue Theater. Mr. Newcomb subsequently appeared with various companies, his last appearance being at Hooley's Theater, Brooklyn N.Y., Feb. 17, 1877.

"Bill" Newcomb was the originator of the "Essence of Old Virginny" dance; a great end-man; and he was especially noted for his stump speeches. W.W. Newcomb was born in Utica, N.Y., August 24, 1823; he died in New York May 1, 1877.

Source for notated version:

Printed sources: Buckley (Buckley's New Banjo Method), 1860; p. 15.

Recorded sources:




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