Posts Tagged ‘Tramps’

The Tramp’s Signal Code

September 12, 2011

Various Signs That Mean Much to Those Who Understand Them.

A custom house official in Port Huron, Mich., Mr. Pulteny Wright, had a good natured talk not long ago with a gentleman of elegant leisure. The gentleman of elegant leisure was on who had “done time,” and who is at present a tourist; that is, he belongs to the great army of tramps, and is a past master in the order.

He became affable and communicative because of some favor Mr. Wright had done him, or because he chanced to be impressed by the official’s winning ways, and in the course of his conversation exhibited a little book, in which were rudely drawn the pictures which tramps of the country make on fence and gateposts, and which form a code of signals all of them understand. So impressed by their curious nature was the gentleman to whom they were shown that he copied them, and his pencil sketches have since come into possession of The Mail. There are twenty-one of the signal marks here presented in groups, for convenience sake, and without regard to any order.

It will be observed that the marks are evidently those used by tramps of the worst type, since some of them indicate where burglaries may be committed or where vengeance may be gratified for some rebuff. As works of art the drawings are not remarkable, but as parts of a rude sort of historic language they are certainly rather striking. Some of them have a grim humor.

— Chicago Mail.

The Bucks County Gazette (Bristol, Pennsylvania) Jan 10, 1889

Socialists in Nebraska

January 26, 2011

Image of Broken Arrow, Nebraska from the Old Picture of the Day blog.

Nebraska farmer — “Socialists? Socialists? Oh, yes, I know what you mean. I have met a good many of ye!”

Omaha socialist — “Eh? In your parts?”

“Plenty. Yes, now I think of it, they do want everything in common — except work. Out our way we call ’em tramps.”

–[Omaha World.

The Fitchburg Sentinel (Fitchburg, Massachusetts) Aug 16, 1887


December 17, 2008
Next Time Take The Train

Next Time Try The Train

Raided by the Police Who Captured a Dozen Hoboes  Saturday Evening.
For some time past the citizens residing in the southwestern portion of the city, have been greatly annoyed by tramps, a regular hobo village having been established at the junction of the Racoon and South Fork of the Licking river. The tramps were about twenty in number, and had established themselves in an old box car. On Saturday they had procured two kegs of beer and a lot of food and were having a hilarious time. Complaint was made, and a squad of police was detailed to arrest the hoboes. The police descended on the camp and suceeded in corralling about a dozen of the tramps. They wer taken to the City Prison and are now doing time.

Newark Daily Advocate (Newark, Ohio) 28 Jun 1897

Wonder if they were laughing all the way to the hoosegow.