The jig “Jerry’s Beaver Hat,” also known as “The Returned Yank,” is a very popular session tune in some areas. The title “Jerry’s Beaver Hat” is a reference to a time when beaver hats were much more popular than beavers. It was not a good time for beavers then. According to Andrew Kitchener’s Beavers (2002), there are only two species of beavers: the European and the American. The European beaver is larger than the American beaver, but was hunted to extinction in England, and near extinction in most of Europe and Eurasia. The American beaver has been reintroduced in England, Scotland, and Wales. There have never been beavers in Ireland. My guess is that some other Saint is responsible. This tune is in O’Neill’s 1001 (1903), and so probably refers to either the nineteenth century penchant for American beaver hats, or to an American who returned home with a European beaver hat. That also is a guess.
Jerry’s Beaver Hat, medium tempo