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#178963 09/01/08 04:03 PM
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Peckerwood.
I heard this used to describe someone I know to be of excellent character and high morals. It appeared to have been used perjoratively.

I finally found it defined in OED as a person of low or insignificent standing -- BUT -- the person using the word descriptively was nasty-faced.
Is there another definition?

In a rush. Excuse spelling OK?

wow #178964 09/01/08 09:27 PM
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It originated as a term by southern blacks uaed in reference to poor southern whites. It has expanded to mean any white.

Faldage #178965 09/01/08 09:43 PM
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W3 gives 'cracker' as the pejorative sense.

-joe (for an unabridged, they do get terse) friday

tsuwm #178966 09/02/08 02:14 AM
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 Originally Posted By: tsuwm
W3 gives 'cracker' as the pejorative sense.

-joe (for an unabridged, they do get terse) friday

I don't understand 'cracker' - what does that mean as a pejorative? Over here it means a firecracker.

The Pook #178968 09/02/08 03:32 AM
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3. Offensive a. Used as a disparaging term for a poor white person of the rural, especially southeast United States. b. Used as a disparaging term for a white person. [AHD4]

-joe (poor white trash) friday

tsuwm #178971 09/02/08 11:33 AM
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Before the Braves moved there Atlanta had a minor league team called the Crackers. Back in the day it was common for a Negor League team in a city to take the name of the local white team, adding the word Black. Hence, one of my top two favorite baseball team names, the Atlanta Black Crackers.

Faldage #178972 09/02/08 01:10 PM
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I was not aware of that definition.

My best guess is that most people using the term 'peckerwood' are not aware of its etymology. In every instance I recall hearing the term - and it numbers at least in the dozens and probably in the hundreds - it had no discernible racial over- (or under-) tones. It was simply an unnecessary expansion of calling someone a 'pecker' or a 'dick.'

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 Originally Posted By: TheFallibleFiend

an unnecessary expansion of calling someone a 'pecker' or a 'dick.'

As my Alabama grandparents used the word quite frequently about and to me when I was a child (much like rascal or cute lil dickens, etc), I'm hoping they did not think I was a dick.

Myridon #178978 09/02/08 09:08 PM
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OK... "dick" as a perjorative?
(Grew up in the 1940a-50s - sadldy lacking in jargonesque-scatology )

wow #178980 09/02/08 09:32 PM
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 Originally Posted By: wow
OK... "dick" as a perjorative?

Slang word for a penis, or for someone who's a real jerk, someone who "screws another person over."

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