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Old 06-26-2020, 03:59 PM
 
11,150 posts, read 10,255,437 times
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I finally got around to reading The Big Con by David Maurer, which is a well-known history of con artists, written in the 1940s, covering the swindles and argot since the 19th century. It sounds as if the number of cons (and victims) is staggering. The language is kind of amazing, because so much of it is inside-jargon, like a secret language, but most amusing to me is the roster of names:

Larry the Lug
Limehouse Chappie
Barney the Patch
Yellow Kid Weil
Crawfish Bob
The Keystone Kid
The Narrow Gage Kid
Big Alabama Kid
Conk Jones
Wildfire John
Omaha Blackie
The Postal Kid
The Clinic Kid
Nibs Callahan
Slobbering Bob
The Mormon Kid
The Jew Kid
The Christ Kid
Qu**r-Pusher Nick
Sheeny Mike
Ni**er Mike
The Brass Kid
The Hashhouse Kid
The High Ass Kid
Fifth Avenue Fred
The Indiana Wonder
Australian Harry
The Honey Grove Kid
Lonestar Jimmy
Lilly the Roper
Devil's Island Eddie
Dan the Dude
The Sanctimonious Kid
Pretty Duffy
Swinging Sammy
Plunk Drucker
Cockroach Gary
Dog-Faced Bradley
Cold-deck Charlie
The Umbrella Kid
Proud of His Tail
The Molasses Face Kid
The Narrow Minded Kid
The Money From Home Kid
The Squirrel Toothed Kid
The Seldom Seen Kid

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Old 06-26-2020, 04:15 PM
 
Location: StlNoco Mo, where the woodbine twineth
7,874 posts, read 5,489,031 times
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Soapy Smith
The Blonger Brothers
My favorite, The Baron of Arizona

These guys put a lot of effort into their swindles.
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Old 06-26-2020, 04:22 PM
 
Location: San Diego CA
6,220 posts, read 4,089,819 times
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Slobbering Bob. That’s quite a moniker.
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Old 06-26-2020, 09:22 PM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
46,432 posts, read 19,980,826 times
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I wonder how "Wildfire John" got people to trust him?
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Old 06-27-2020, 11:08 AM
 
2,114 posts, read 565,088 times
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A good third leg to interest in gambling and carnies, both of which have their own list of colorful characters, argot and history... some of which overlaps.
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Old 06-28-2020, 11:49 PM
 
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Charles Ponzi should be on that list.
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Old Today, 07:35 PM
 
11,150 posts, read 10,255,437 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aliasfinn View Post
Soapy Smith
The Blonger Brothers
My favorite, The Baron of Arizona

These guys put a lot of effort into their swindles.
The book mentions Blonger. I just didn't include it because I didn't think the name was that interesting.
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Old Today, 08:27 PM
 
Location: StlNoco Mo, where the woodbine twineth
7,874 posts, read 5,489,031 times
Reputation: 10326
Does your book mention these ?

Fainting Bertha
Crooked Neck Smitty
The Shoe String Kid

They were notorious thieves and pickpockets from Pittsburgh.

https://newsinteractive.post-gazette...hs-underworld/
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