Daniel Decatur Emmett Poems

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Daniel Decatur Emmett
Daniel Decatur "Dan" Emmett (October 29, 1815 – June 28, 1904), was an American songwriter and entertainer. Of Irish ancestry, he was born at Mount Vernon, Ohio, then a frontier region. After serving in the United States Army, Emmett joined a circus company in 1835. In 1842, in association with Billy Whitlock, Dick Pelham, and Frank Brower, he organized the Virginia Minstrels, which made their first appearance at the old Chatham Square Theatre in New York City on February 17, 1843. Photograph of Dan Emmett in blackface, probably early 1860s.Although blackface performance, in which white men painted their hands and faces black and impersonated caricatures of black men and women, was already an established performance mode at that time—Thomas D. Rice had created the character of Jim Crow nearly a decade earlier, and blackface had been widely popular ever since—Emmett's group are said to be the first to "black up" an entire band rather than one or two performers. The group's full-length blackface performance is generally considered to have performed the first true minstrel show: previous blackface acts were usually either an entr'acte for a play or one of many acts in a comic variety show. Emmett retired to his hometown of Mount Vernon in 1878. He passed away on June 28, 1904, aged 88 years.

to a lady, asking him how long he would love her
It is not, Celia, in our power
To say how long our love will last;
It may be we with... [read poem]
to a very young lady
Sweetest bud of beauty, may
No untimely frost decay
Th' early glories which we trace
... [read poem]
dixie's land
I wish I was in de land ob cotton,
Old times dar am not forgotten;
Look away! Look awa... [read poem]
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