• U.S.

Miscellany: Hobo

1 minute read

In a Chicago chapel one night last week gathered 75 frazzled vagrants for the funeral of Harry Batter, 46, professional hobo, who had died trying to stoke a fire with gasoline. To Dr. Ben Reitman, president of Chicago’s Hobo College, Batter had left his money, and directions to master the ceremonies. Announced Dr. Reitman: “Everybody eat, drink, and be merry—that’s what Harry ordered. Harry was a sponger . . . and no good, but he had a fine heart.” Services opened with the singing of “Hallelujah, I’m a Bum.” Vagrants got drunk, made speeches, piously intoned the Hobo’s Prayer. At wake’s end, quarters were distributed to every guest. Next day Host Harry Batter was cremated, and his ashes scattered over the graves of the Haymarket rioters.

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