A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from July 29, 2004
Dem Bums (Brooklyn Dodgers)
"Dem Bums" (or "them bums" or "our bums") were the Brooklyn Dodgers baseball team and their fans.

American cartoonist Willard Mullin of the New York (NY) World-Telegram was famous for his cartoons of the Brooklyn bum. He first created the Brooklyn "bum" character in 1939.


Wikipedia: Willard Mullin
Willard Mullin (September 14, 1902 – December 20, 1978) was an American sports cartoonist. He is most famous for his creation of the "Brooklyn Bum", the personification of the Brooklyn Dodgers baseball team, based on circus clown Emmett Kelly's "Weary Willie" hobo persona. He was widely published: he cartooned daily for Scripps-Howard's New York World-Telegram and Sun for decades and was often published in Scripps-Howard's twenty papers, as well as in the Sporting News.

23 April 1938, El Paso (TX) Herald-Post, "Brooklyn Fans Demonstrate Outstanding Loyalty to the Club" by Joe Williams (Scripps0Howard SPorts Writer), pg. 9, col. 3:
"Those guys are from New York. The big swell headed so and so's. Come on you Brooklyn bums, and knock their brains out." This, in short, is the credo, the viewpoint, the psychology of the Brooklyn fan, and may his tribe never grow less.

14 March 1939, Wisconsin Rapids (WI) Daily Tribune, pg. 5, col. 3:
Two days later, Red pitchers held the Dodgers hitless...Some of the comment on the no-hitter: New York Mirror - "This has got to stop"; Post - "Dodgers alread in mid-season form"; Flatbush fans - "Dem bums"...

21 May 1940, Milwaukee (WI) Journal, "Cubs Beat Dodgers Third in Row, 6 to 4," pg. 7, col. 1:
New York, N. Y. -- The Dodgers, having lost three in a row, Tuesday rapidly were regaining the form which had long caused the clientele of Ebbets field to designate the home town performers with refreshing candidness as "our bums."

19 April 1940, Brooklyn (NY) Daily Eagle, pg. 17, col. 6 photo caption:
ADMIRED ENEMY -- Most of the Giants are "them bums" to Dodger fans, but Burgess Whitehead is one of the exceptions.

11 August 1940, Wisconsin State Journal (Madison, WI), "A New Series" Dodgers Fans vs. Indians" by George Kirksey, pg. 11, col. 2:
NEW YORK -- (U.P.) -- It becomes increasingly apparent that, from the standpoint of the spectator, the most desirable world series come October would be a tilt between Brooklyn's "beloved bums" and Cleveland's "bottle babies."

11 September 1940, Washington (DC) Post, pg. 19:
We asked our taxi driver about it this morning. What did he think about the pennant race? How about the Indians? He cocked his head over his shoulder in our direction and looked at us balefully.

"Dem bums," he said, "are bums."

9 May 1941, Pittsburgh (PA) Press, pg. 42, col. 4:
There's Joy in Flatbush --
Brooklyn 'Bums" Smack Down
Cards, Take Over First Place

By GEORGE KIRKSEY
United Press Writer
(...)
Throughout the strange land that is Brooklyn, the talk was of little else but "our Bums" and what they did to the hard-riding St. Louis Cardinals, who came to town with a record of 10 victories in their last 11 games.

8 September 1941, Salisbury (MD) Times, "Dodgers Push League Lead to 3 Games" by Sid Feder (Associated Press Sports Writer), pg. 9, col. 4:
At this writing, "dem bums" are bouncing along on a three-game lead, and they'll hold it all day today, for the outfit, National and American leagues both, take a holiday.

4 October 1941, Dayton (OH) Daily News, "Si-ings" by "Si" Burick, pg. 10, col. 1:
Cartoonist Credited With Naming 'Em "Bums"
Folks hereabouts generally credit or blame Willard Mullin sports cartoonist of the World-Telegram for tagging the Dodgers with "them Bums"...The name isn't pretty but it's popular, like W. C. Fields.

Amazon.com
Willard Mullin's Golden Age Of Baseball Drawings 1934-1972 Hardcover – August 6, 2013
by willard mullins (Author, Artist), Hal Brock (Editor), Michael Powers (Editor)
The years 1930-1970 were the Golden Age of both American sports and American comic strips, and we turn your attention to a neglected part of the art form—sports cartooning—and to its greatest practitioner, Willard Mullin.Willard Mullin’s Golden Age of Baseball: Drawings 1934-1972 collects for the first time Mullin’s best drawings devoted to baseball. Mullin was to baseball players what Bill Mauldin was to soldiers: advocate and critic, investing them with personality, humanity, dignity, and poignancy; Mauldin had Willie & Joe and Mullin had the Brooklyn Bum, his affectionate 1939 character representing the bedraggled figure of the Brooklyn Dodgers.
Posted by Barry Popik
New York CitySports/Games • Thursday, July 29, 2004 • Permalink