Waterman (1) (The)
X:1 T:Waterman , The L:1/8 M:6/8 B:McGlashan – Collection of Scots Measures (c. 1781, p. 15) Z:AK/Fiddler’s Companion K:A c/d/|efd cdB|AGA BGE|EFE EFE|d2c Bcd| efd cdB|AGA BGE|E>FE E2d|c>dB A2:| |:A|A2c e2c|A2d f2d|FGA Bcd|cBA GFE| A2c e2c|A2d f2d|FGA Bcd|cdB A2:|]
WATERMAN , THE. Scottish, Country Dance Tune (6/8 time). A Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AABB. John Glen (1891) finds the earliest appearance of the tune in print in Joshua Campbell's 1778 collection (p. 58). The 6/8 tune was also entered into the music manuscript collections of multi-instrumentalist John Rook  (Waverton, Cumbria, 1840) and of American musician M.E. Eames (1859, p. 71, perhaps from Philadelphia). Eames's second strain diverges in parts from the original, but it is identical to the version of "The Waterman" printed on an undated single sheet  by the New York music publishing firm of Firth & Hall (Pearl Street), right above another jig, "Hopp Marianake," which was also entered by Eames into his manuscript.
The tune may or may not be associated with English composer Charles Dibdin's (1745-1814) two-act ballad opera The Waterman: or, the First of August, first performed at the Theatre Royal, Haymarket, in 1774.