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Rules Of Life On The Road From The Hobo Ethical Code

People assume that someone who has chosen to be homeless and travel across the country must have no drive, no goals, and no code of ethics, but a happy wanderer wouldn't get far without a game plan.

This game plan surprisingly involved a spirit of cooperation shared between fellow Hobos, and when they worked together they created a vagabond network that spanned across the country.

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Hobo networks were able to map out various aspects of society by using a symbolic code to communicate with each other, and before long their unification became official at the 1889 Hobo Convention in St. Louis, Missouri.

It was there that the Hobo Ethical Code was established, to help a happy wanderer be all he or she could be, and much of it sounds like good advice for us all:

5. BE A SELF-STARTER.

"When no employment is available, make your own work by using your added talents at crafts."

6. SET A GOOD EXAMPLE.

"Do not allow yourself to become a stupid drunk and set a bad example for locals' treatment of other hobos."

7. BE MINDFUL OF OTHERS.

"When jungling in town, respect handouts, do not wear them out, another hobo will be coming along who will need them as badly, if not worse than you."

8. DON'T LITTER.

"Always respect nature, do not leave garbage where you are jungling."

9. LEND A HAND.

"If in a community jungle, always pitch in and help."

Read 15 Rules From The Hobo Ethical Code Of 1889 here


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MrsO told me about how hobos would show up at their house and her mother would give them some food. It was near the CN railroad tracks and their house was probably "tagged" to tell them where they could get a hand out.
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