Antedating of "Frankfurter"

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Mon May 12 07:26:09 UTC 2014

On Sun, May 11, 2014 at 2:40 PM, Shapiro, Fred <fred.shapiro at>wrote:

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> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       "Shapiro, Fred" <fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU>
> Subject:      Antedating of "Frankfurter"
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Frankfurter (OED 1894)
> [1877 _N.Y. Times_ 3 Sept. 8 (  In the way of eatables,
> Fran=
> kfurter sausage with sauerkraut ... proved the most potent attractions.]
> Fred Shapiro
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society -

Does anyone else have a dialectical distinction between a "frankfurter
sandwich" = hot dog made with a frankfurter v. "hot dog" = hot dog made
with a wiener? This distinction was usual in StL, back in the day. A
"frankfurter" was short and thick, like a (German) bratwurst. The wiener
was longer and thinner, the extreme case being the "foot-long" - literally
a foot long - sold at Foot-Long Hot Dogs, located "Down On Sarah Street,"
as the title of a blues sing goes.

The oldest G-hit that I found that doesn't specifically equate "frankfurter
sandwich" with "hot dog" or define "hot dog" as slang for "frankfurter
sandwich." "Wiener sandwich," OTOH, goes back to 1908 and forward to 2005
without *ever* being equated with "hot dog" in any way, shape, or form.

FWIW, until, on a whim, I searched it, the term, "wiener sandwich" was
totally absent from my vocabulary. I thought that it was merely my own
nonce-invention, for the sake of completeness.

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 -

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