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The Jim Crow persona is a theater character — developed and popularized by entertainer Thomas D. Rice (1808–1860) — in his minstrel shows, a racist depiction of African-Americans and of their culture. Rice based the character on a folk trickster named Jim Crow that had long been popular among black slaves. Rice also adapted and popularized a traditional slave song called "Jump Jim Crow" (1828).
The character conventionally dresses in rags and wears a battered hat and torn shoes. Rice applied blackface makeup made of burnt cork to his face and hands and impersonated a very nimble and irreverently witty African-American field-hand who sang, "Come listen all you galls and boys, I'm going to sing a little song, my name is Jim Crow, weel about and turn about and do jis so, eb'ry time I weel about I jump Jim Crow."