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The exact details of Scott Joplin's birth are uncertain, but he was born probably in Linden Texas, between June 1, 1867 and mid-January 1868. He had five siblings, among which he was the second child. His parents were Florence Givins and Giles Joplin. When he was still a very young child his family moved to Texarkana, where his mother cleaned homes for a living. Because of his mother's work he was able to delve into music, and eventually his mother bought him a piano. His talent was noticed by a German music teacher, Julius Weiss, who decided to teach him for free. His experience with Weiss probably spurred him on his musical career. He went to George R. Smith College in Sedalia, where he studied composition. Around 1891 Joplin was in a minstrel troupe, and by 1895 he was in New York, selling some songs. In 1894 he moved to Sedalia, where he worked as a pianist in various places, including gentlemen's clubs.
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