My Wild Irish Rose was written by John Chancellor Olcott
Olcott was an American actor, singer and songwriter of Irish descent.
Olcott was born on July 21, 1858 in Buffalo, New York. His mother was a native of County Cork, Ireland.
My Wild Irish Rose was written in 1898.
My Wild Irish Rose debuted in his musical A Romance of Athlone. The play “debuted at the Fourteenth Street Theatre in New York in January of 1899. The play is set in Athlone in the year 1800, a turgid romance set, in part, in an Irish Traveller’s camp.”
Grand Rapids Press from October 24, 1903, told the following story of the creation of the song:
“Five years ago when Mr. Olcott and his mother were in Ireland spending the vacation months, they were sailing on a pretty Irish lake. The mother spied some beautiful flowers. She asked the boatman what they were. He told her they were wild Irish roses.
“What a pretty name for a song,” she said.
“It is that,” the actor cried, “and I’ll write one to fit the title.”
Olcott died on March 18, 1932 in Monte Carlo, Monaco.
In 1970, Olcott was posthumously inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.