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 September 09, 2007
“You can board a train at dawn and, twenty-four hours later, still be in Texas”

"You can board a train at dawn and, twenty-four hours later, still be in Texas” was made into a popular joke in the 1930s and 1940s.


14 October 1931, Middlesboro (KY) Daily News, pg. 2, col. 8:
An American in England wa giving some illustration of the size of his country.

“You can board a train in the State of Kentucky at dawn,” he said impressively, “and twenty-four hours later you’ll still be in Kentucky.”

“Yes,” said one of his English listeners, with feeling, “we’ve got trains like that here, too.”

10 August 1937, Charleroi (PA) Mail, pg. 4, col. 2:
An American in England was giving some illustrations on the size of his country:

American—You can get a train in the state of Texas at dawn and 24 hours later you will still be in Texas.

Englishman—Yes, we’ve got trains like that here too. 

6 November 1942, Helena (MT) Independent, pg. 4, col. 5:
An American soldier in England was giving some illustrations of the size of his country. “You can board a train in the state of Texas at dawn,” he said impressively, “and 24 hours later you’ll still be in Texas.”

“Yes,” said one of his English listeners, with feeling, “we’ve got trains like that here, too.”—Wall Street Journal.

Google Books
I Give You Texas!
500 Jokes of the Lone Star State
by Boyce House
San Antonio: Naylor Company
1943
Kessinger publishing
2004
Pg. 2:
A Texan was talking in the smoking car of a train in the East. None of his listeners had ever visited Texas and he wanted to impress them with its greatness, so he said:

“You can enter Texas in the morning, travel all day, go to sleep and then when you crawl out of your berth next morning, you will still be in Texas.”

The others didn’t seem much impressed, so he decided to stretch things a bit:

“And you can travel all that day, too, and you will still be in Texas.”

One of the listeners leaned forward and said:

“We’ve got trains like that in Arkansas, too.”

5 September 1943, Dallas Morning News, section IV, pg. 10:
And that closes another chapter, Tex, except for the story of the Texas soldier boasting about the size of his home state to a group of English Tommies by telling them that he had gotten on a Texas train at dawn one morning, and twenty-four hours later he was still in Texas.

“Yes,” said one o the Britishers, with feeling, “we’ve got trains like that here, too.”

Posted by Barry Popik
Texas (Lone Star State Dictionary) • (0) Comments • Sunday, September 09, 2007 • Permalink