Sweeney, Joel [Joe] Walker
- Robert B. Winans
(b Appomattox, VA, c1810; d Appomattox, VA, Oct 29, 1860). American banjo maker, and performer. American banjo maker, and performer. As a boy, he learnt to play the banjo from slaves on his father’s farm near present-day Appomattox. He is reputed to have improved their African-derived instrument by fashioning a wooden hoop to replace the original gourd body, and, more importantly, by adding, sometime before ...