Thank you Mike--the current state of Morton scholarship is admirable,
All dates considered (and especially now the Mexican visa), a Morton
birthdate of September 20, 1890 seems most likely (though 1889 was the
year named by those closest to him)... I feel this does not
invalidate Jelly's claims of jazz authorship in the first years of the
20th century--it's not implausible that he wrote "New Orleans Blues"
at the age of 12 or 13, especially as he openly acknowledged the
assistance of piano teacher Frank Richards.