Where The Term ‘Skid Row’ Came From

Text Version:
The term “Skid Road” or “Skid Row”, a slang term for a run-down or dilapidated urban area,  was an actual road in Seattle, Washington during the late 1800’s.  The real name of the road was Yesler Way (now better known as Pioneer Square),  and it was the main street along which logs were transported.  It soon became a rather sketchy stretch of street that loggers began to call “Skid Road.” It also became the dividing line between the affluent people of Seattle and the mill workers along with the more impoverished population of the city. It didn’t take long for the name to catch on and eventually stick.

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4 comments

  • Skid roe comes from Ireland, county cork. Steven skidd put 59 pound sterling in a trust fund in the 1500s. The trust paid for 50 of the country’s poorest veterans to live out there lives for free. but they must be completely pennyless to get on the list of people waiting to get in. The list of people are on skidd roe.

    • I’d go with that. Thank you Patrick, sounds far more plausible

    • Both of you are wrong. The first answer is partially right. The logs were taken down a mountain on a “skid” so it was named Skid Road. Men would ride the logs and houses of ill repute would set up shop along the skids so the guys could hop off, take care of business, and hop on another log and continue their way down. When Seattle developed, the place where the skid was turned into a street called Yesler Way, named after Henry Yesler.

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