Talk like a Newsie: Newsboy Slang

By Kristina | September, 8, 2011 | 0 comments

Many of the newsboys at the turn of the 20th century were not schooled, and therefore lacked proper grammer. As a result, the newsies made up their own vocabulary or slang. Many of the popular slang words are used by Grin and his fellow newsies in the book. See if you can spot them among the list below:

slang definition
mutt a trespassor
track a kid’s spot
scab someone whose on a job that’s being striked
hawk to sell
lick to fight
soak to fight
punk to fight
five-fingered to steal
swiped to steal
hooked to steal
extras papers sold as special editions
pitch to throw
dreamin through a pipe mistaken
skipped ran away, ran out
grafter a newsie that runs away with the change
blow it in/ blowed spend money
White Way Broadway
pluck honesty
mouth-organ hermonica
sand the track stop
yellows New York Journal and World Papers

Comment below: If you were a newsie, what slang would you come up with?