.. began studying the banjo in 1886 at the age of nine and three years later obtained a position with the Chicago firm of Lyon & Healy; he once said that his principle duty was dusting the instruments.
He played his first professional engagement at the World Fair in Chicago in 1893 and from that time on was an entertainer a local clubs and in vaudeville. At one time he was partner to Parke Hunter in a “Mays & Hunter” team.
In 1910 he moved back to Chicago where he established a teaching studio “with a department for the repair of banjos”. It has been said that he also made banjos but the instruments bearing his name were probably made for him by Lyon & Healy.
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