Wordsmith.org: the magic of words

Wordsmith Talk

About Us | What's New | Search | Site Map | Contact Us  

Topic Options
#945 - 03/27/00 02:25 AM American Civil War
whalemeat Offline
stranger

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 14
Loc: sydney australia
Can anybody help with words or phrases originating from or given particular meanings during the American Civil War?

A few examples I know of are 'hookers' (from 'Hooker's girls', the women who visited F J Hookers's quarters in Washington), burnsides/sideburns (A E Burnsides whiskers), 'Tell it to the marines' and 'War is hell' (both Sherman).

Is 'skedaddle' a civil war word? It seems to have popped up about then and was certainly used a lot during the war.

There must be lots more... 'Damn the torpedoes! Full speed ahead!'


Top
#946 - 04/03/00 01:32 PM Re: American Civil War
tsuwm Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 04/03/00
Posts: 10523
Loc: this too shall pass
I've read some excellent CW histories which touch on phrases of the time (I suppose someone has collected these).

As to 'hooker' being an example, I'm afraid that story may be apocryphal. While Fighting Joe may have not been a man of upstanding moral character, the word hooker was used to mean prostitute at least fifteen years prior to the start of the Civil War, according to sources of the day -- he should be given credit for popularizing it though. ; )


Top
#947 - 04/04/00 02:19 AM Re: American Civil War
whalemeat Offline
stranger

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 14
Loc: sydney australia
Yes, I see that usage of 'hooker' was mentioned in a 1956 book called 'Tarheel Talk' and dated in that at 1845. I originally picked up the connection with Fighting Joe from a reference in Gore Vidal's 'Lincoln' and he refers to the use in Washington at that time of 'Hooker's girls'referring to his stream of visitors. I understand that the late Civil War historian, Bruce Catton held Mr FJ responsible for popularising the term and recorded that the Washington red-light district became known as Hooker's Division. Obviously Fighting Joe was a man of prodigious talents.

I stand, gratefully, corrected.


Top

Moderator:  Jackie 
Forum Stats
8746 Members
16 Forums
13809 Topics
215484 Posts

Max Online: 3341 @ 12/09/11 02:15 PM
Newest Members
bobwar, Johnreed28, Lakshman, dcsteve, Jorg
8746 Registered Users
Who's Online
0 registered (), 21 Guests and 5 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Top Posters (30 Days)
endymion6 113
LukeJavan8 96
wofahulicodoc 80
A C Bowden 50
Tromboniator 9
TitoMatito 2
tuhin 2
chicablanca 1
tsuwm 1
Jorg 1
Top Posters
wwh 13858
Faldage 13803
Jackie 11609
tsuwm 10523
Buffalo Shrdlu 7210
LukeJavan8 6585
AnnaStrophic 6511
Wordwind 6296
of troy 5400
BranShea 5282

Disclaimer: Wordsmith.org is not responsible for views expressed on this site. Use of this forum is at your own risk and liability - you agree to hold Wordsmith.org and its associates harmless as a condition of using it.

Home | Today's Word | Yesterday's Word | Subscribe | FAQ | Archives | Search | Feedback
Wordsmith Talk | Wordsmith Chat

© 2014 Wordsmith