There is a fascination with the Hobo. Who was he and why did he even exist. At some periods the Hobo numbered in the millions. Some of the history of the Hobo is pure fiction other parts are exaggerated and some of the hobo research and writings are professional and well thought out. There are also a wealth of hobo reminiscences and auto biographies.
Many sites are devoted to the Hobo and as I have organized this hobo section of vanished I have thought - how will it be different?
How do we create a site that is different from those who:
I think the answer lies in the over all purpose of this website which is to provide research, data, and Genealogical training to individuals interested in Family History. The Hobo's after all had families and when they disappeared into the vastness of America and disappeared from most databases because they were drifters often looking for work they ceased to exist and those Hobo ancestors are often the brick wall that Genealogists run into when looking for family.
M.A Historical Museum Studies
University of New York
The writings of A-NO 1
"The famous Tramp"
by Leon Ray Livingston
Livingston was not poor but he was fasinated with being a Hobo himself back in the first decades of the 20th century. His books will give you a feeling for what it was like to be a Hobo.
eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with
almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or
re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included
with this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.net
Out in the cold world and far away from home,
Some mother's boy is wandering all alone,
With no one to guide him or keep his footsteps right,
Some mother's boy is homeless tonight.
Oh, bring back to me my wandering boy,
For there is no other who's left to give me joy,
Tell him his mother, with faded cheeks and hair,
Is at the old home awaiting him there.
The Daybook is an important source of information on the Hobo. Other topics than the Hobo were covered. The articles listed here are Hobo related.
Conceived by newspaper mogul Edward Willis Scripps as an experiment in advertisement-free newspaper publishing, the Chicago Day Book was published for a working-class readership Monday through Saturday from September 28, 1911 to July 6, 1917. Scripps chose Chicago, with its large working-class population, as the venue for the first of what he hoped would become a chain of ad-free newspapers. Free from commercial influence, the Day Book would report on issues of concern to what Scripps called the “95 percent” of the population. Priced at one cent, like the other Chicago dailies of the period, the Day Book was published in a small tabloid format of nine by six inches, with 32 pages per issue. The small format was one of many strategies Scripps used to hold down publishing costs, along with bulk purchase of newsprint for all of his newspapers and the use of features created by Scripps’s Newspaper Enterprise Association.
Edited by former editor of the Toledo News-Bee, Negley D. Cochran, the Day Book championed the interests of workers, with extensive coverage of working conditions, wages, union organizing, and labor unrest. Circulation received a boost during the Chicago newspaper strike of 1912, when pressmen were locked out at several major Chicago dailies, but fell again when the strike ended in November 1912. The Day Book’s most celebrated reporter was Carl Sandburg, who wrote for the paper from early 1913 until its cessation in the summer of 1917. Although for the most part Cochran eschewed the use of bylines in the Day Book, more than 135 articles have been attributed to Sandburg, and this body of work vividly reflects his views on the social and political issues of the day.
On December 20, 1913, the Day Book announced that it was absorbing the Chicago Daily Press, which was the other explicitly pro-labor Chicago daily. (The Daily Press was founded by the Clover Leaf Newspaper chain in August, 1912; no copies of the paper, which was published for less than two years, are known to have survived.) However, other than providing subscribers of the Press with the December 22 issue of the Day Book, the transaction was more symbolic than tangible. Cochran wrote in the December 20 issue that “this involves no change in the policy, purpose or program of The Day Book. It will go on just the same as it did before the change, without the slightest alteration in the policy I outlined when I issued the first copy of The Day Book.” In the December 22 issue, he specified further that “in absorbing the good will of the Chicago Daily Press, The Day Book has assumed none of its obligations.” Neither the assets nor liabilities of the Press, nor its subscriber base, were acquired by the Day Book, and the printing plant of the Press was advertised for sale in the Chicago Daily Tribune.
Circulation of the Day Book peaked at 22,839 in October 1916, and January 1917 was the only profitable month in the paper’s six-year run
The Day Book articles
It was April of 1930 and Thomas Agen was a Hobo staying for awhile in Lancaster Pennsylvania. The depression had just started in Oct. 1929. Thomas was not a young man anymore. At 64 most Hobo's are dead. He wasn't. He had come to the United Staes in 1889 as a young man, probably full of hopes and dreams. Did he achieve them? We don't know. He told others that he had never married. Did he lie? We don't know that either. We do know he was a Hobo because he said he was.
What do you know about him.?