Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at YAHOO.COM
Mon Mar 12 15:13:50 UTC 2007

This is great, Barry, esp. since it makes it unnecessary for me to rent _Red River_, which, unbelievably, is scarce around here.

  I always thought jackasses said "hee-haw," not "yee-haw."  I doubt that the latter-day interjection originated in a conscious imitation of the quadruped.

  Regarding the 1943 ex., it may be of interest to note that no Marine Corps parachutists ever jumped into battle in WWII. The 1st Marine Parachute Regiment was deployed in combat solely as infantry until it was disbanded early in 1944 and its personnel reassigned to non-parachute units.  That's why nobody in a WWII movie ever shouts "Yee-haw!" while jumping out of a plane.

  If, however, they shout "Geronimo !" they ought to belong to the Army's 505th Parachute Battalion, the unit that adopted that cry in training.


  Bapopik at AOL.COM wrote:
  ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
Sender: American Dialect Society
Poster: Bapopik at AOL.COM
Subject: Yeehaw

FWIW, I did a "yeehaw" entry. =20
Yeehaw (Yee-ha; Yee-haw)
"Yeehaw=E2=80=9D (or =E2=80=9Cyeeh-ha=E2=80=9D pr =E2=80=9Cyee-haw") is simi=
lar to the yell =E2=80=9Cyahoo!=E2=80=9D It =20
indicates excitement, exuberance, and delight. =E2=80=9CYee-haw!=E2=80=9D is=
imitative of the =20
bray of a donkey.=20

_Urban Dictionary_ (
w) =20
yee haw=20
1. What a cowboy or redneck might say; equivalent to the urban =E2=80=9CYea=
h!=E2=80=9D or =E2=80=9C
2. A stupid redneck.=20
1. Yee haw! Boy howdy!=20
2. Look at that yee haw blowing into his jug and dancing like a monkey.=20
by SC.Zee Apr 1, 2004=20

yee haw =20
A non descript exclamation which usually accompanies alot of hooting and =20
whistling at whatever is causing the excitement. Most likely coined in the =20
southern states of north America (eg Texas). Can also be used to punctuate =20
traditional country and western music.=20
It might also be exclaimed by the rider of a bull or bucking bronco at a=20
rodeo or their spectators.=20
Whilst at the rodeo the rider of the bucking bronco yelled;=20
=E2=80=9CYEEEEE HAWWWWWW!=E2=80=9D=20
by Dacarlo Apr 8, 2004=20

_Cowboy Lyrics_=20
( =20
Artist/Band: Owen Jake=20
Lyrics for Song: Yee Haw=20
Lyrics for Album: Startin With Me=20

It=E2=80=99s five o=E2=80=99clock, just got paid:=20
I=E2=80=99ll be off the next two days.=20
No more workin=E2=80=99 like dogs,=20
No more leash, no more boss.=20
I=E2=80=99ve got a weekend of nothin=E2=80=99 to do at all:=20
Yee Haw!=20

I know a place down the road,=20
The girls are hot, the beer is cold.=20
It=E2=80=99s two-for-one, yeah, that=E2=80=99s right:=20
Not just drinks; it=E2=80=99s girls to guys.=20
I hear the twins are back in town from Saginaw:=20
Yee Haw!=20

You take your all-right; you take your can=E2=80=99t-wait.=20
A lotta of bring-it-on an=E2=80=99 some damn straight,=20
An=E2=80=99 mix it all up with some down home southern drawl, y=E2=80=99all:=
You got your yee haw! =20

_Internet Movie Database_ (
Plot summary for=20
My Darling Clementine (1946) =20
=E2=80=9CMy Darling Clementine=E2=80=9D is John Ford=E2=80=99s retelling of=20=
the Earp/Clanton fued, =20
and the famous show down at the OK Corral. Ford embellishes on the story by=20=
centering the plot on the fictional character Clementine (Doc Holliday=E2=
=80=99s =20
schoolteacher flame from back east). Written by Jeff Walker {pasingphas at yah=}=20

ranscript.html) =20
My Darling Clementine Script - Dialogue Transcript=20

[Singing Continues]=20
Yee-ha! Ya-hoo! =20
Yee, yippa-hoo! Yeah-ha!=20

(Oxford English Dictionary)=20
yeehaw, int. =20
Chiefly U.S=20
[Imitative. Cf. YAHOO int.]=20
An exclamation of enthusiasm or exuberance; =E2=80=98yahoo!=E2=80=99=20
[1929 N.Y. Times 24 Mar. 5/8 The old ballads had a feeling not found in=20=
mammy=E2=80=99 songs=E2=80=A6 They seemed to have possessed something more=20=
than derives from=20
the efforts of the strident lads whose =E2=80=98m-a-m-m-ys=E2=80=99 yee-haw=
upon a stricken=20
and helpless world.] 1941 Jrnl. Negro Educ. 10 83 He lets go. =E2=80=98Yee-=
George says, and all for the freedom.=20

7 September 1844, Milwaukie (WI) Sentinel, pg. 3, col. 3:=20
As a well dressed lady was proceeding down Third Avenue, on Wednesday, a =20
huge jackass was observed to throw up his nose etc.=E2=80=94Presently he kic=
ked up his =20
heels, and with a most sonorous yee-haw! yee-haw! set off at the top of his=20=
speed down the avenue.=20

8 May 1875, Dallas (TX) Weekly Herald, pg. 1:=20
[From the Rochester Democrat.]=20
Then of all the pullin=E2=80=99 and haulin=E2=80=99 and sweatin=E2=80=99 an=
d gruntin=E2=80=99 and tuggin=E2=80=99=20
and liftin=E2=80=99 and yeehawin=E2=80=99 you ever seen or heard of, we yee=

_Google Books_=20
-PA12&lpg=3DRA1-PA12&dq=3D"yee+ha"&ie=3DISO-8859-1&output=3Dhtml) =20
Lutchmee and Dillio: a study of West Indian Life=20
by Edward Jenkins=20
London: W. Mullan & Son=20
in three volumes =20
Volume II=20
Pg. 12:=20
Yee-ha!=E2=80=94oh ha!=20
Who see de niggah?=20
Yo ha!=E2=80=94yee ha!=20
Where go de niggah?=20
Singing for Jee-roo-sa-lem, =20
Singing for Jee-roo-=20
Singing for Jee-roo-=20
Singing for Jee-roo-sa-lem!=20

_Google Books_=20
07&lpg=3DPA207&dq=3D"yee+ha"&ie=3DISO-8859-1&output=3Dhtml) =20
The Snake-dance of the Moquis of Arizona=20
by John Gregory Bourke=20
New York: Scribner=20
Pg. 161:=20
=E2=80=9CThis was repeated eight or ten times, all singing a refrain, keepi=
ng time=20
by stamping vigorously with the right foot: =E2=80=98Oh-ye-haw, oh-ye-haw,=20=
ha-yee-ha-ha-yee-ha-ha-yi-ha-a-a-a,=E2=80=99 chanted a dozen tomes or more w=
ith a slow measure=20
and graceful cadence.=E2=80=9D=20

1 May 1902, Des Moines (Iowa) Daily Leader, pg. 7, col. 6:=20
A donkey can put a great deal of pathos into its yeehaw! yeehaw!=20

15 July 1906, Washington Post, pg. 8 ad: =20

6 August 1943, Sheboygan (WI) Press, pg. 7, col. 5:=20
Similar to the bray of a mule is the =E2=80=9Cyee haw=E2=80=9D yell of Mari=
ne parachutists=20
who =E2=80=9Cgive=E2=80=9D when they dive from the plane into space.=20

AOL now offers free=20
email to everyone. Find out more about what's free from AOL at=20

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