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place where vagabonds, low-lifes, and out-of-work men gather in a town, 1921, with reference to Seattle, Washington, U.S., a variant of skid road "track of skids along which logs are rolled" (1851); see skid (n.); the sense of which was extended to "part of town inhabited by loggers" (1906), then, by hobos, to "disreputable district" (1915); probably shaded by the notion of "go downhill."
Disreputable: a tightwad with latent skid-road tendenciesn phr,n
[fr the log-paved path on which the Seattle lumberman Henry Yesler skidded logs to his sawmill]
A street or district frequented by derelicts, hoboes, drifters, etc, such as the Bowery in New York City
[1931+; fr skid road]