A Case of Kid Cussedness from 1901

A Letter to the Editor at the Duluth News-Tribune on November 11, 1901:

I would respectively [sic] call the attention of the chief of police to an example of “Hoodlumism” on a street car in your city as I have never witnessed anywhere.

Surely the “kids” are under the surveillance of the police authorities, if the bums cannot be controlled.

Business relative to a burned building called me to Duluth Heights. When I returned to the city, just getting dark, half a dozen passengers came on the car; while passing a store, seven “kids” climbed aboard, and clear down to the incline gave such a specimen of cussedness that would never be tolerated on the Bowery.

Wrestling, scrapping, kicking and yelling, annoying all the passengers, even to insulting two women passengers by throwing one another’s dirty cans into the faces of the women!

While attending to my business on the Heights a team came there with lumber; in five minutes a crowd of boys from ten years and upward were hurling snow balls, lumps of ice, and stones at the teamster and his team until both were frantic.

Shame on the moral turpitude of such citizens, who will permit their boys to thus annoy and insult passengers by such an exhibition of “kidism” as that displayed on Saturday. I am informed that such an exhibition takes place every afternoon after school is out! These kids simply terrorize the motorman, and run the whole thing.

I carefully secured the names of these boys, who are thus advertising Duluth Heights. They can be given the chief of police or to the general manager of the street railway.

My business was finished in one trip but from these exhibitions of “kid cussedness” and the appearance of the precinct, I do not care to invest a dollar in Duluth Heights property.

Yours Respectfully,

A Visitor



about 11 years ago

Most of the time, I'm amused when I hear stories of "bad behavior" back in the day.
However, those kids sound like awful little shits.


about 11 years ago

"half a dozen passengers came on the car"


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You sure got that right, Chris Monroe