Chicago talk

Paul paulzjoh at MTNHOME.COM
Thu Nov 5 17:51:41 UTC 2009

My experience growing up in Chicago was that flat was used as an
alternative to apartment, a six flat was usually a three story building
with two apartments to the floor. The use of 12 or 24 flat was not
unusual in my memory.
My guess is flat is shorter than apartment and "six flat" is faster to
say than "six apartment building"
Never heard a home referred to as a flat. In other words, I could live
in a six flat, but I rented an apartment.

Wilson Gray wrote:
> Heard on a Cold Case Files - a true-crimes, trash-TV show - episode
> that occurred in Chicago:
> _Three-flat_  : the kind of house known in Saint Louis as a
> "three-family flat" and in Boston as a "triple-decker"
> _Gangway_  : a narrow passageway, three to eight feet wide or so,
> between two houses or any other two buildings, leading from the front
> to the back of the building to the left. The same term with the same
> meaning is used in Saint Louis.
> _Decade_    : pronounced as though spelled "dekkid." This is the only
> pronunciation that I ever heard or used in Saint Louis. I have no clue
> as to how common this pronunciation may be in Chicago.
> -Wilson
> –––
> All say, "How hard it is that we have to die!"––a strange complaint to
> come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
> –Mark Twain
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society -

"Guard against the impostures of pretended patriotism."
        George Washington, Farewell Address

The American Dialect Society -

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