Questions and answers

What was the hobo code during the Great Depression?

What was the hobo code during the Great Depression?

From illegally jumping trains to stealing scraps from a farmers market, the hobo community needed to create a secret language to warn and welcome fellow hobos that were either new to town or just passing through. It was called the Hobo Code.

What is the hobo zip code?

“11030” is the HOBO ZIP CODE. You can spell out HOBO by drawing a line between the 1’s to make an H and a straight line down the 3 to make a B.

What are the hobo symbols?

Hobo signs and symbols

  • A cross — “angel food” (food served to hobos after a sermon).
  • A triangle with hands — the homeowner has a gun.
  • A horizontal zigzag — a barking dog.
  • A square missing its top line — safe to camp in that spot.
  • A top hat and a triangle — wealth.
  • A spearhead — a warning to defend yourself.

Are hobo codes still used?

The hobo code tradition continues in the present day, but are now digitally enhanced since hobos now have access to cell phones and computers.

What is a female hobo called?

bob tail – a short local freight train. bo-ette – a female hobo.

What is hobo short for?

Bill Bryson suggests in Made in America (1998) that it could either come from the railroad greeting, “Ho, beau!” or a syllabic abbreviation of “homeward bound”. It could also come from the words “homeless boy” or “homeless Bohemian”.

What is an American hobo?

A hobo is a migrant worker or homeless vagrant, especially one who is impoverished. The term originated in the Western—probably Northwestern—United States around 1890. Unlike a “tramp”, who works only when forced to, and a “bum”, who does not work at all, a “hobo” is a traveling worker.

What does the tattoo on Benjamin Tod’s neck mean?

hobo zipcode
One of the highly distinctive things about Benjamin Tod is the tattoo he has centred on his neck, which reads ‘11030’ otherwise known as the “hobo zipcode”. Evidently, this is because Tod considers himself something of an outlaw.

Is being a hobo illegal?

“I tell people the best way to enjoy traveling is always the safe way,” says Connecticut Shorty, a former hobo “queen,” as crowned at the National Hobo Convention that takes place the second week of August, every year since 1900, in Britt, Iowa. “Hopping freights is illegal and dangerous.”

What is a female hobo?

harvest buzzard – a hobo who works in the harvest. -z;tl’ hasher – a female cookhouse helper. hay bag – a female hobo or stew bum.

What is a hobo dollar?

The hobo nickel is a sculptural art form involving the creative modification of small-denomination coins, essentially resulting in miniature bas reliefs. Due to its low cost and portability, this medium was particularly popular among hobos, hence the name.

What do you call a female hobo?

bo-ette – a female hobo.

What was the Hobo Code and what did it mean?

This brilliant, hieroglyphic-like language appeared random enough for busy people to ignore, but perfectly distinctive for hobos to translate. The code assigned circles and arrows for general directions like, where to find a meal or the best place to camp. Hashtags signaled danger ahead, like bad water or an inhospitable town.

Why was the hobo sign language in flux?

The hobo sign language was hardly a formal system, constantly in flux, thus much of the hobo sign language has been lost to time. The signs had to keep up with new ways of life (such as the addition of roads), and like most languages it had its own dialects in different parts of the country.

What did hobos stand for in the 1930s?

No matter how you sliced it, hobos were linked to trains. Hobos self-identified as those who were homeless but willing to work, and judged tramps as those who traveled but were unwilling to work, and bums as those who neither worked nor traveled.

What did people use to write on hobo signs?

Hobo signs were typically drawn onto utility poles using charcoal or some other type of temporary writing material that would wash out in time with the weather. Sometimes they would write on railroad trestle abutments, outcropping rocks, or even on houses when referring to those who lived inside.