According to my excellent reference book Monarchs of Minstrelsy, from “Daddy” Rice to Date by Edward Roy Le Rice, today is the birthday of one of American show business’s premier clog dancers, Tim Hayes (1841-1877). Born in Dublin he debuted in a tent show run by a man named Wild at age 10. In 1860 he came to New York, playing such venues as the Melodeon and Barnum’s American Museum. Like most performers of his era, he ran constantly from one minstrel company to the next: Hooley and Campbell’s; Unsworth’s; Carncross and Dixey’s; Christy’s and M.C. Campbells. He was only 26 years old at the time of his death.
To find out more about vaudeville past and present, consult No Applause, Just Throw Money: The Book That Made Vaudeville Famous, available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and wherever nutty books are sold.
To learn more about silent and slapstick comedy don’t miss my new book Chain of Fools: Silent Comedy and Its Legacies from Nickelodeons to Youtube, just released by Bear Manor Media, also available from amazon.com etc etc etc