Derivation of the word oaktag

Fred Shapiro fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU
Fri Dec 20 01:06:21 UTC 2002

On Thu, 19 Dec 2002, Mark A Mandel wrote:

> #He notes that in a previous issue (57.3 for fall 1982, p 189), David
> Gold had #suggested that "oaktag" is a New York City (and Newark, New
> Jersey) word. But #FWIW, it's not in the Dictionary of American Regional
> English.
> I knew the word growing up in NYC in the 50s-60s. I'm pretty sure I

I also knew the word growing up on Long Island in the 1960s.  The earliest
on New York Times Historical is:

1965 _N.Y. Times_ 26 June 15 (ProQuest Historical Newspapers)  The youths
followed the shirt-sleeved candidate down Seventh Avenue, displaying
oaktag placards that read: "Lindsay -- a traitor to the G.O.P."

Fred Shapiro

Fred R. Shapiro                             Editor
Associate Librarian for Collections and     YALE DICTIONARY OF QUOTATIONS
  Access and Lecturer in Legal Research     Yale University Press,
Yale Law School                             forthcoming
e-mail: fred.shapiro at     

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