Minstrel singer and banjo player, ignored for the denigrating and sometimes even racist content of his songs. This pre Civil War blackfaced song became popular since 1830 when minstrel singer Dan Emmett (from Dixie fame; see there) wrote a version for his group The Virginia Minstrels and sang it on the 4th of July in Mount Vernon, Ohio. It was first published in 1843. In Georgia the song is said to be based on the life of Rev. Daniel Tucker of Ebert Co. (late 18th century), while elsewhere the theory prevails the subject was Virginia Captain Daniel Tucker who became the second British governor of Bermuda and who died in 1624. Those Virginia Minstrels (and many groups in their wake) came over to London and Ireland and may have influenced the forming of ceili bands.
Golden Gate Quartet & Josh White [at the Library of Congress]
Burl Ives [as Old Man Tucker]
Jo-El Sonnier [as Run Dan Tucker]
Tanya Tucker [as Old Dan Tucker's Daughter]
Bruce Springsteen [opening track We Shall Overcome - The Seeger Sessions]