CHANCELLOR JOHN OLCOTT, more commonly known as Chauncey Olcott, was known throughout the music world for his contributions as a composer, singer, and actor. Best remembered as the writer of My Wild Irish Rose and When Irish Eyes Are Smiling, Olcott was arguably one of the premier Irish tenors for a period from the 1890s until he left the stage in 1925 due to illness. He passed away at his villa in Monte Carlo in 1932.
Born in Buffalo NY around 1860, he worked in venues all over the USA and the United Kingdom. He appeared at the Temple Theatre in Camden and at the Walnut Street Theatre in Philadelphia.
In 1947, a movie was made of his life. My Wild Irish Rose featured Dennis Morgan in the title role, along with Arlene Dahl, Alan Hale Sr., George Tobias, Sara Allgood and William Frawley (Fred Mertz in I Love Lucy).
Camden Courier February 19, 1932
OLCOTT, IRISH TENOR, DIES
Chauncey Olcott, noted Irish ballad singer, whose golden tenor made "Mother Machree" and "My Wild Irish Rose" immortal, died early yesterday at his winter· home, "Villa Emeraude" at Monte Carlo .
"The last of the troubadours," as he was called, died at the age or 71, of pernicious anemia, from which he had suffered for years.
Olcott will be remembered by many South Jersey residents for his appearances at the old Temple Theatre at the turn of the century. He brought many of his most famous successes to the theatre on whose site the new post office now is rising. He also played numerous engagements at the Walnut Street Theatre, Philadelphia.
Olcott's wife, and a brother, John, were at the bedside when he died. Mrs. Olcott announced she would accompany her husband body to New York for burial. She will sail on the Italian liner, Conte Biancomano next Tuesday.
Arrangements will be made for services in St.Patrick's Cathedral, New York.
Olcott was a native of Buffalo. N. Y., where he was born July 21, 1860. He was developed as a singer by the late R. M. Hooley and became famous as the "Irish tenor."
He married Margaret O'Donovan of Sail Francisco in 1897, traveled with Hooley's company several years, appeared with various minstrel and opera troupes, and then went to England to sing in comic opera.
Olcott succeeded W. J. Scanlan as star of Irish musical dramas and returned to America to introduce "Mother Machree," the greatest song hit of his career.
Irish songs which Olcott made famous before his serious illness in 1925
included "I Love the Name of Mary," "A Little Bit of
Heaven, Sure They Call It Ireland," "My Wild Irish Rose,"
"When Irish Eyes Are Smiling," and many sentimental ballads of
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