From The Hobo Grapevine
"The Hobo Minstrel"
Great Grand Hobo Duke of Cyber Space
It would be greatly appreciated
if anyone having dates, or news, about
Gatherings, or Festivals, would send the dates, and a small write up, as soon as possible.
If I don't have the information I can't post it. Right? Right.
having bits to be posted on the grapevine can email them
to Fran by clicking HERE
or use the snail mail address at the bottom of this page.
For anyone having questions to
post here. I will add your email address,
so you can receive answers, unless you tell me not to.
For more fabulous, informative, Hobo information
use these links.
There are none better on the entire internet.
Link to Books, CDs & Cassettes
by " The Hobo Minstrels "
Use this link for information about "The Hobo
Minstrel's" (Fran's) book,
"The American Hoboes".
Use this one for information about "The Hobo Minstrel's" (Fran's) CDs and cassettes.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Yes, I now have my recordings of Hobo songs, poetry and history on CDs. The price for the two CD set is $15.00, including postage, in the continental U.S. Click here on, Hobo Song CDs, to get full details about this and my other available CDs. Thank you for your attention. I am
* * * * * * * * * * * *
Poems / Songs
I get so many requests for the words to old songs and poems I thought I'd add one, or two, at a time to the site. As some are quite lengthy they're a bit much for the Grapevine page so I've added another page to present them. These, mostly, old pieces will be replaced periodically, by our Senior Culture and Arts Editor, using a scientific method to determine the length of time each should be displayed. To enjoy the current "Artistic Selection" click on the title, below. Anyone having specific requests may ask for them by emailing our "Senior Culture and Arts Editor" at; cultural arts
From Roger L. Johnson
* * * * * * * * * * * * *
* * * * * * * * *
* * * * * * * * * * ** * * * * * * * * * *
I want to appologize to all of you for being out of contact for the past few days but circumstances caaught up with me that couldn't be helped. (first one that says "Age" gets a boot in the butt.) Anyway, I've ended up under the care of the VA, for a few days, while they poke, pry and try to tweak some improvements in my middleaged Mr. America, statuesque, massive,muscular body. No Problems there but the reason I've been completely out of touch is that my lap top, for some reason, won't give me a good enough connection from here to even do email right.
If this ends up on the Grapwvine and you can read it then you'll know I got lucky. In case I can't get it on I asked my daughter, Triple T, to write a note to Flatcar Frank and ask him to please post my appologies to all.
I'll be in touch when I can and, in the meantime, I'll be thinking of you and
I Love Y'all.
"Heeeeeerrr's Oops, Agin"
By Gosh, I may be giving the VA conniptions while they try to figure how come this degenerate, old, illegitimate son of a Shepherd keeps going but it's sure good to hear that some of you younguns, like Oops, are still riding and enjoying life the way it's meant to be. Notice he didn't mention working for cash during his jaunt south. Makes me a bit jealous to think Oops may have learned to get by doing less work than I ever did.
Any of you riders up in the area should look into giving Oops and the bbrc a had at their spring work party. Who knows, there may even be a stray six pack, or two, on the grounds.
so just go back from another trip back south, back at bbcrc now, only for a few days though. just want to point out that our spring work party is coming up soon, lots of music and good times as well as getting some more things done around here. (bbcrc.org) for more info.
oops... and chessieka
"Stonefield Railroad Days"
Hope all is well with everyone! We are busy here at Stonefield getting ready for the 2013 season. Our first school group come on May 1st. I received a postcard from Redbird Express that you would like our dates for the 2013 Railroad Days here. The dates are set for Aug. 17th & 18th. Hope to see everyone!
Office Assistant & Store Manager
Stonefield Historic Site
12195 Co Hwy V V
Cassville, WI 53806
"Another Hobo Documentary In
Yup, another is being worked on and this time it's a French Mademoiselle that's looking for help so, maybe, that will encourage some of the older, more lecherous, Hoboes. Hey, some of you guys are getting so old and decrepit it may be your last chance to have a connection with a young woman. (That doesn't include myself, of course.) Nathalie would also like to hear from you younger Boes. Her telephone number and email address are at the bottom of her note so, get with it.
I'm Nathalie Gros, a French journalist working for French TV. I am realizing a documentary about trains in America and I would like to tell the story of the Hoboes. The documentary is taking place in Tennessee, Texas, Louisiana and maybe in Kansas. Do you know if there anybody around there who knows about the Hoboes ? Do you know if there are signs of this history (hoboglyphs, memorial, museum...) around there ? And furthermore, do you know if there are any gathering of Hoboes somewhere in May ?
I hope you are well : I'm sorry our documentary is not taking place in Plymouth because otherwise we would have come and meet you with great pleasure.
All the best,
French journalist in the U.S.
"Oops Is Back To Wanderin"
well my time with the forest crew is over until september and of course, im back out running around, me and chessieka hopped out headed north back on thursday and got to eugene yesterday after a couple days in k falls relaxing. gonna be here for a week and then head back to southern cali. until then, gonna brew some beer and drink some as well...
until next time...
oops... and chessieka
Way to go oops. Brewin and drinkin. Of course the drinkin is more fun then the brewin but, sometimes you need to do one before you can do the other. Anyway, when you start the drinkin have one for me and the next time I open the Brandy jug (as soon as I get off this gadget) I'll have a slug of that for you. Of course, at my age, I'm not supposed to enjoy to many slugs of the Blackberry Brandy but if one of them is for you then it don't count for me.
Keep having fun and enjoying life.
"Rochelle Railroad Days"
I found this website for the Rochelle Railroad Days, Baloney Kid will be performing! Watermelon seed spitting contest June 1 - 2, 2013
Jump Off John
I don't have anything official on Derry yet but I got a note today from "Stripper Girl" and she said she had heard the Derry dates were September 19th through the 22nd. If anybody knows the Derry powers that be please ask them to send me something official so I can post it here, on the Grapevine and on the Gatherings page.
"Frog, Where The Heck Are You?"
Hey, Frog, if you get on line (for a change) and see this please get in touch with me. I've had some calls from Hoboes that have tried calling you but never get any answer. Get with it, buddy. Now that you're getting older and "more" decrepit your friends worry about you when they lose touch.
"Modern Day Hoboes"
My name is Molly Sebastian and I am a Casting and Development Producer working with Zodiak Media (http://www.zodiakmedia.com). Zodiak is the world's third largest television production company.
We are currently working on a development project for a major network focused on *Modern Day Hoboes*. We are very interested in this as a possible series but we are still in the early research stages of figuring out if this is feasible.
I would love to be in touch with you, or other Hoboes, to provide you with more information and to see if you might be interested in participating in this project.
If you or any other Hoboes are interested in talking, assisting with information or helping, please email me your number or feel free to call me directly at 646-747-7908 or email me at; firstname.lastname@example.org
Modern day doesn't necessarily mean young. ( which is a word I'm starting to hate) I'm sure Molly would like to hear from any of you that are on the road and living the wonderful life now. Who knows? If they should want to use your picture, even if you're not as photogenic and handsome as I am, you could, possibly, become the next Clark Gable Or Doug Fairbanks. Regardless of that, I think we should all do what we can with a project like this to help show the general public that we're not just drunken criminals as some of the old stories portray us.
"Hobo Museum & Foundation
If you need to reach the Hobo Museum or Hobo Foundation, PLEASE, call the museum at 641-843-9104 or email Linda at mailto:email@example.com DO NOT CALL, Mary Jo's Hobo House and Catering. This is a restaurant not the place to call and make demands upon, Linda, whom is at her employment.
Linda Hughes, Hobo Foundation President
"Latest From Oops"
first off the art and music show at BBCRC was great, we had a good turnout and everyone was having fun. we had a good friend bring his BBQ trailer up so everyone was fed really well, also folks/friends from as far away wisconson showed up. anyways, me, chessieka and two other friends hopped out last night from dunsmuir and got a nice boxcar ride north to visit some friends. we got to eugene early this moring and are headed out later today. as always im sure we'll have a great ride. talk to you soon...
oops... and chessieka
Sounds like oops and chessieka are having them a pretty good stay way up there in the wilds of the Pacific Northwest. I guess maybe, it's a tollerable place to stay. Of course it's probably not the equal of New England, in the Northeast but liveable. What the heck, Road Hog loved living there for a lot of years.
Hey Oops,You and chesseika keep enjoying life "Way out there" and, if your wanderings take you back to civilized country give ma a call.
"News From Oops And The BBRC"
so no new traveling news (yet), we here at BBCRC are putting on our first event of the year, on the 22nd of march David Eberhardt's new photo show You Can't Catch a Ghost will be on display in our PFE reefer gallery. The show features striking
black and white images taken in the 1990s and early 2000s along the tracks in the western US. Some of the characters seen in David and Jack Cahill's award winning documentary film Long Gone will be featured. also there will b live music in the boxcar and lots of food for everyone. as of last week we have started our forest restoration project which will go on thru the beginning of April and anyone wanting to volunteer should stop thru. all and any info can be found at bbcrc.org. http://www.bbcrc.org/
oops, chessieka... and the
"Stretch Is On The Move"
Had a phone call from Stretch last night to let me know he's in Shreveport and getting ready to move on. He's planning on making Amory but he'll be stopping in Jackson first.
I don't know why talking with Stretch brought this to my mind but I got to thinking one thing I always hated about being in the south was that you sometimes end up in a dry town. Now this could be good or bad, depending. If you can't buy a cold one you save bucks OR you get someone to drive you to where you can get it. NOW! This can be good or bad too, again, depending. When you're in the store you buy extra to save traveling but, the problem with that is that you get back to camp and have all those cold ones so you end up drinking them all and have to make more trips. Ahh, decisions, decisions, decisions. Oh well, I don't have any decisions to make right now. I'll just have another cold one and worry about it in the morning. Thank heaven Plymouth, NH isn't a dry town.
"Tramp Printer & Full Moon
I got a call from Tramp Printer last night and I gotta tell Y'all that he's one aging Hobo that's living a great life. I hadn't heard from him and Nan for a while and he explained that it was because they had been out of the country on some exotic cruises. Yup, you read that right but they're nor blowing dollars on fancy cruise ships. They're doing it on what we used to call "Tramp Steamers". What could be more appropriate than Tramp Printer sailing on Tramp Steamers?
Good news is that they're getting ready to take off again. This time they plan to go to places like Tai Wan, Korea and China. Printer tells me that they plan to hike part of the Great Wall of China. Man, ain't that something to look forward to? Good thing Karl has got a young, pretty girl to take care of him and look after him on trips like this. I, and I'm sure all their friends wish them the best time they could possibly have.
Good For You Printer And Nan
Continue To Live Free And Enjoy Life.
"Hobo King Frog"
I was down by the tracks and heard a whistle blowing. Been a while since I was near a train so it took me a while to figure out what it was saying but, I finally got it. It was telling everyone that Frog has a birthday coming up two days from now, on March 6. Anybody wants to sent the "Old Guy" a card or a note, here's his mailing address
aka Gerard Fortin
615 Janet Street
"Dakota City Heritage Village
Looking For Hoboes"
Greetings from Dakota City Heritage Village!
Dakota City is a village depicting the years 1880 - 1920 zoning in on 1900 for school programs. We are a 501 (c) 3 non profit organization. And we are located on the Dakota County Fairgrounds in Farmington MN. Our main fund raisers are the Dakota County Fair, Harvest Moon Festival, Christmas in the Village, WWII Re-enactment and our School Tours and Summer Camps. We are staffed with a part time education coordinator and part time maintenance man.
During the fair one of our volunteers portrayed a hobo to a degree! But, I would like someone who really knows the ropes of a hobo and has artifacts pertaining to life of a hobo. On the fairgrounds we have a campground, and showers. Our fair runs from August 5 - 11. What I am looking for is to have folks in the hobo attire and set up a hobo camp.
From my personal point my grandparents lived about thirty feet away from the railroad tracks by the depot in Farmington so I knew hobos! And my Dad told the story that he and his buddies in the depression would steal fruit and veggies from the stores and then take them to the hobo jungle in town and have meals with the hobos.
If you could help me out with this please email me at this email address or call 612-360-5543 I am not available to talk between the hours of 7:30 - 9:15 am or 2:30 - 4:15 pm as I am a school bus driver.
Thank you for your time and consideration of helping us.
Dakota City Heritage Village Board Member, and events cooridnator
"A Hobo Message - - - - - Or
I received the following note and photo from a gentleman in PA who, as you'll see in his note, was wondering if it could possibly be some type of a Hobo sign. It doesn't look familiar to me but, maybe, seeing as those that access this site are super intelligent persons, one of you will recognize it, whatever it may be. If so Terry's email address will be at the bottom and, I know, he'd appreciate any help he could get identifying it, whatever the heck it is.
I am a research historian in Philadelphia, PA. A friend found an object in his backyard and has asked me for help identifying its meaning. I have attached a photo. I have looked through several books on symbols and have come up empty. Could this be a hobo symbol? It would have been made by the owner of the place to send a message to those passing by. The four houses on the block were built in the early 1900s. The stone was attached to a field stone plaque which then was screwed/bolted on to a large oak tree. The stone was completely covered up by a callous from an old wound. When the tree (long dead) was being cut down the stone popped out. Is there a forum or Listserve that you can recommend? Thank you for your time.
"Hobo Queen Half Track Has A New
The following note is all Half Track sent me and having the inquisitive (nosey ?)type of mind I have it opened all sorts of questions for me. She's too young to moving into any type of elder housing, like some of our friends, so I'm wondering something different. Do you suppose she might have found herself a "Toy Boy"? If she did all I can say is, "Good for you Half Track. Enjoy life".
I have a new address and telephone number. Will you please post it for me.
16983 Grove St.
Little Falls, MN 56345
"Port Huron Is On"
Please pass the word along Fran! And I hope that you will try and come. It would be great to have you here.
The Port Huron and Detroit Railroad Historical Society will host Hobo Fest 2013 on Saturday, September, 14th at the former property of The Port Huron & Detroit Railroad, located at 2100 32nd Street in Port Huron. The event celebrates Port Huronís history as a vital international transport center, the cityís struggle to overcome the economic depression and the courage and resourcefulness of those that rode the rails seeking work and adventure.
Featuring a Spam cook-off and carving contest, music, children activities and much more Hobo Fest is a family friendly educational event that brings people together of all ages to experience the life and adventures of the hobos.
Please bring lawn chairs and dress casually according to the weather.
Interested musicians who would like to perform must contact Entertainment Director Keith Menzies at 810.305.7075.
Click here for the Port Huron site
See you down the tracks,
Joejoe Depot Diva
Joe Ann Burgett
"Hallelujah, Mad Mary Is Out
Of The Hospital"
Hello Dear Fran!,
A quick note to let you know that Mad Mary is now at her sister's home recouperating. She sends a BIG THANK YOU to all for the prayers and the cards - they have been a great inspiration and encouragement to her. She says "keep em coming"! The address is still the same for correspondence. Please post for the Hobo Community, and know that YOU are loved!!!
Hobo Queen Mad Mary
aka Mary Dudley
5900 Garfield Rd.
Auburn, MI 48611
Stretch called me last night to let me know that the Pullman Gathering dates for this year are Saturday August, 31st and Sunday September 1st. It will be a "Pot Luck" deal and Stretch says they could use a few more musicians this year. Anyone with more information or questions can call Stretch on his cell at;
414 610 4538
"Britt Hobo Days Info"
Could you please post this on the grapevine for the Hobo Day Committee? Thank you,
Beth Gretillat, Committee Secretary
If anyone has questions about hobo days and
activities the e-mail is
"Update on Dante"
A quick update on Dante. He has moved again and asks if you'll post his new Address.
Here it are;
Michael P. Conley
"Dante Fuchwa" Hobo King
5666 E. Hampton Street , Apt 159
Tuscon AZ 85712
" Hobo Art ? "
I received the following email from Dave and was so intrigued by the description he gave I thought I'd post it here to see if anyone has any information about this or similar items. A hammered copper display of this type is something I've never come across before and I wonder, was it done by a Hobo or was just a display made by some artist to portray a Hobo. Anyone that has any information about this particular piece can email Dave at his address below his note. If anyone knows anything about this particular piece, or similar ones, I would also appreciate hearing from you.
30 years ago I was in a Contractors office and remember seeing this piece of art. It was a Hobo walking down the RR tracks with a nap sack tied to a stick over his shoulder. He was distraught looking with his head down. The caption that I remember says " He got every job he bid" I have had this in my mind for years and this is how I remember it. I believe it was in hammered copper. Do you know where I might find something like this or have you ever seen it?
"The Crumb Boss" Cookbook
NEW HOT OFF THE PRESS
"The Crumb Boss" Cookbook $10.00 per book with $4.00 Shipping and Handling 400 plus recipes To order email Linda at firstname.lastname@example.org or you may purchase them at the Hobo Museum or at Mary Jo's Hobo House in Britt, Iowa All proceeds raised from this fundraiser goes to Keep Hobo History Alive/Hobo Museum
"Britt Hobo Day Information"
For all Hobo Day Information, such as about stew cards, hobo guides, vendor information and lodging information, I'll post that information as soon as I get it. Amy Boekelman is the President of the Britt Hobo Days Association and she'll send all the information to the Grapevine as soon as everything is set up.
The new motel in Garner, Iowa is now open. To make reservations for the 113th National Hobo Convention, call the Garner Chamber of Commerce for the phone number 641-923-3993.
"Link To Shoestring's Videos"
Hello, there ~~~~
Sorry for not keeping in touch lately, but I've redeemed myself again and just got back from a 5,200 mile hobo trip. I rode from Sioux Falls west to Vancouver, Washington and then went east on to Cleveland, Ohio before returning home again. I made a ton of new videos and these may be viewed at my new YouTube site. I'll include a new link for you to post if you don't mind.
I hope this email sees you well and may God bless you furthermore,
(Here's the new link to all my new hobo videos): I'm still getting them up. I have over 50 more to upload and all have lots of good information.
Hobo "Shoestring ~~~~~
'Frog's New Mailing Address"
aka Gerard Fortin
615 Janet Street
"2012 Hobo King & Queen"
Would you please put on your websites that the Hobo Museum Hours are Monday-Friday 10a.m. till 5p.m. Central Time! Saturday by appointment. Memorial Day till August 15th. $3.00 admission for all ages except babies. The rest of the year is by appointment. email email@example.com to make an appointment.
I've mentioned on here before, but evidently it didn't register with many, that even though I do have a Face book site I do not access it or answer messages on it. I have replied with email to some that have left notes on there but don't receive answers to my emails. I would cancel the damned thing but it does remind me of birthdays that I would otherwise not remember and that's the only reason I keep the stupid site active. My email address firstname.lastname@example.org has not changed in over twenty years and most of you have it so "PLEASE" use that instead of Face book to contact me. I know that nothing on the internet is private but if I write an email note to a friend only that person gets it, not the whole damned world. Maintaining this site, answering email and snail mail to people all over the world asking questions about Hoboes and Hobo history and doing REAL work on my computers takes quite a bit of time so I don't have any extra for screwing around with Face book.
"America's Leading, Male, Sex
Some of you may have heard me mention, over the years, that I pick up a bit of cash posing for the art classes at the local university. I thought you might be interested in seeing an example of what these students do. This is a photo of an oil painting one of the students finished this week. "Notice", that I'm modeling fully dressed. This professor insists on clothing when I model so the coeds don't get too excited. It's just as well. I don't want to go through the problems, again, that I went through after posing for the town nude calendar a few years ago. (Sheesh. It's tough being a sex symbol to millions of women.)
Help With Photos
This may be a good time to tell folk that if you send a picture to me, or anyone else, it should be reduced in size before you email it. A photo as it comes from your digital camera can be as much as 2 megabytes and a thirty six inch picture. A photo this large takes a hell of a long time to down load with a phone connection. The picture of the mayor and Happy Hobo, above was two megabytes, 38 inches, had a resolution of 350 and took me fifteen minutes to just copy it to my computer. The photo now has been reduced to 3" X 4" with a resolution of 72 and is only 10 kilobytes. A photo reduced like this can be brought back to any size and resolution in your own computer so, please, have mercy on me and anyone else you send pictures to and learn to reduce them before you email them. Anybody can do it even my great grand daughter can do this and she ain't no brighter than her father or her grandfather.
2007, Britt Group Photo
"Links to "My Space" sites, and
Here on the Grapevine, and on other pages of this site, there are, and will continue to be, links to other internet sites. I try to check these sites out before posting the links but, occasionally, there could be links, from these other sites, to unwanted materials. If you should find yourself linked to sites that contain objectionable matter let me know, so I can look into it.
+ + + + + + + + + + + + + + +
+ + + + + +
(why the green plus signs?)
(No reason except that I don't usually use green and wanted to see what it would look like)
(Hey, don't laugh. Some day you may be old and get weird ideas, too)
I'm always looking for more pictures of Hobo art to add to the Hobo Arts page. Let's show folk what we, and the old Hoboes have for talent. To you folk that aren't Hobos, I'd appreciate it if you'd send pictures of any Hobo art that you find, also. Help us preserve as much Hobo history as possible. For too many years Hobo art and the history of the American Hoboes has been neglected and, at times, what is believed and saved is misinterpreted giving many of today's people false impressions of the true Hobo.
To get to the Hobo Art page
"The Hobo Minstrel"
11 Artisan Lane
Plymouth NH 03264