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Citizen Hobo – How a Century of Homelessness Shaped America - Chicago Scholarship Online
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Citizen Hobo: How a Century of Homelessness Shaped America

Todd DePastino


In the years following the Civil War, a veritable army of homeless men swept across America's “wageworkers' frontier” and forged a beguiling and bedeviling counterculture known as “hobohemia.” Celebrating unfettered masculinity and jealously guarding the American road as the preserve of white manhood, hoboes took command of downtown districts and swaggered onto center stage of the new urban culture. Less obviously, perhaps, they also staked their own claims on the American polity, claims that would in fact transform the very entitlements of American citizenship. This book tells the epic story ... More

Keywords: Civil War, homelessness, hobohemia, American polity, mass consumption, suburbanization, hoboes, houselessness

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2003 Print ISBN-13: 9780226143781
Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013 DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226143804.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Todd DePastino, author

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PART I The Rise of Hobohemia, 1870–1920

PART II Hobohemia and Homelessness in the Early Twentieth Century

PART III Resettling the Hobo Army, 1920–1980

PART IV The Enduring Legacy

End Matter