Word Origin & History
"descendant of Du. settler of New York," 1831, from Diedrich Knickerbocker, the name under which Washington Irving published his popular "History of New York" (1809). The pen-name was borrowed from Irving's friend Herman Knickerbocker, and lit. means "toy marble-baker."
"short, loose-fitting undergarment," now usually for women, 1881, shortening of knickerbockers (1859), said to be so called for their resemblance to those of Dutchmen in Cruikshank's illustrations from Washington Irving's "History of New York" (see knickerbocker