[Ads-l] Antedating of Jeepers

ADSGarson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Fri Oct 30 12:37:50 UTC 2015

Excellent find, Stephen. I phrase "jeepers pelter" appeared in a song
printed in a newspaper in 1914.

Line in song: But jeepers pelter, both my eyes

Date: June 26, 1914
Newspaper: South Bend News-Times
Newspaper Location: South Bend, Ind.
Article: The Melting Pot: Come! Take Potluck With Us.
Quote Page 8
Database: Chronicling America


[Begin excerpt - OCR errors likely]
Tho Boobs of Broadway.
(Kalamazoo Telegraph-Press.)

I live out west in Hokumville.
I always have and I always will.
The town is full of corn-fed Rubes,
And some of them are goldarn boobs,
I'd heard a lot about Broadway,
Where lobsters are, and night is day,
And I thought for sure that all the
Were in a class with Johnny Wise.

Oh, gosh, I had to giggle when I struck
   the darned old street.
In all my life I never did so many
   rummies meet.
Why, I've seen more boobs on Broad-
   way (this ain't no comical kid)
Than ever I've saw in Hokumville, or
   anywhere else I did.
I thought that there on old Broadway
I'd find the wise men of our day;
That Bill and Mame and Hank and
Would sparkle, like George Cohan is;
But jeepers pelter, both my eyes
Got what I call a big surprise.
The boobs are thick and the good Lord
They're boobs, if they do wear real
   store clothes.
[End excerpt]


On Fri, Oct 30, 2015 at 8:12 AM, Stephen Goranson <goranson at duke.edu> wrote:
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Stephen Goranson <goranson at DUKE.EDU>
> Subject:      Re: Antedating of Jeepers
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Here's one from 1906, but jeepers, the word after it is unclear.
> Kalamazoo Gazette Aug 29, 1906 p.6 col. 1-2 "Major Bush Tells of Mermaid Ch=
> ase....Academy Man Back From East, Where He Booked a Bunch of Swell Shows"
> "....good shows in New York?"
> "Did I?" ejaculated the Major...."Well, jeepers pelter [?]! I should say I =
> did!"
> Stephen Goranson
> http://people.duke.edu/~goranson/
> ________________________________________
> From: American Dialect Society <...> on behalf of Baker, John <...>
> Sent: Thursday, October 29, 2015 7:22 PM
> To: ...
> Subject: [ADS-L] Antedating of Jeepers
> Merriam-Webster has the exclamation "jeepers" from 1927.  Here's an earlier=
>  usage, in a purported letter to the editor of the Mount Carmel (Pennsylvan=
> ia) News, Oct. 15, 1925, p. 2 (Newspapers.com):
> "Well, anyhoe, I ketchin an evryting shees go purty gude but 2 mooch slow u=
> ntil we hittingk sucha stashun how you callit "Parkin Place" - den train sh=
> ees go down big hill to town witch Connduckter callin "Mahnoy City" - den t=
> rain shees backin up fur longk time and By Jeepers we stop "Parkin Place" a=
> gain!"
> John Baker=
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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