On The Hoke

Dave Wilton dave at WILTON.NET
Mon May 20 20:57:23 UTC 2002

Has anyone heard the phrase "being on the hoke?" It presumably dates to the
1920s and is used in reference to hoboes or the hobo lifestyle. I'm trying
to find out what the term means and roughly how common it was.

I've found various uses of "hoke" to mean swindle or cheat (from "hokum")
and also theatrical slang uses, but nothing that relates specifically to
hoboes (other than the idea that they might engage in swindles to earn a few
bucks) or the full phrase, "on the hoke."

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