Decades after he first wrote it, Scott Joplin’s “The Entertainer” would become number one again in 1977 with the release and success of the movie “The Sting,” starring Paul Newman and Robert Redford. 

The movie would help cement the popularity of the uniquely American form of music–a syncopated style that was one forerunner of jazz , and the leading style of American popular music from about 1899 to 1917. Ragtime evolved from honky-tonk piano players along the Mississippi and Missouri rivers in the last decades of the 19th century.

This post was contributed by Ross Malone. A historian and a retired school teacher, Ross has authored many books about Missouri’s history, weird facts, and folk tales. He has also written children’s historical fiction. Visit his website, and buy his books in the Missouri Life store.

Photo credit: Gerson Pancorbo, Unsplash