Name for bundle in a handkerchief on a stick

You know when people who are leaving home (often in old Disney cartoons) pack all their possessions up into a little bundle, tie it up in a handkerchief, and hang it from a stick over their shoulder?

I’m sure there’s a name for that bundle, but don’t know what it is. Please help, or tell me if I’m looking for a word that doesn’t exist.

Bindle, as in bindle stiff (hobo).

I have heard it called “napsack”, as in “napkin sack”, but I don’t think that is the proper name, just a parlance I’ve encountered.

I think stuyguy nailed it. Britt, Iowa has an annual hobo convention which prominently features ‘hobo stew’ made by the trough. I remember a sign that mentioned packing up your bindle and hopping a frieght or something of the sort.

Una Persson is your location a Henry Kuttner reference?

Tucker bag (for the southern star contingent)

The term “bindle” is what I’ve always heard. I also thought that “swag” was used down under as well.

Down Under it’s definately ‘swag’ as Zenster points out. “Once a jolly swagman camped by a billabong, under the shade of a coolibah tree …” (Walzing Matilda)

I’m pretty sure that Una’s location is a Ghostbusters reference.


It’s a reference to the fact that she sleeps above her covers.

four feet above her covers.


I am the Key Master.

Also called a “travelin’ sack”.

Yup! I just saw the movie again while on the road in Montana.

What a great question. It’s almost like the French-maid discussion, in that I wonder if hobos ever actually carried these things.

Also, I remember “running away” when I was 8 and fixing myself a bindle. I think I got it from “Leave it to Beaver.” What a dork.

While bindle and bindle stiff originated about the time of the hobo(the laste 1800’s), the early cites indicate that they were the hobo’s bed-roll , which might contain his/her possesions. The small hankerchief-on-a-stick may have been a cartoonists idea.

Where did you travel?

Went to Billings for a boondoggle sales trip. Nice place overall, although sadly unproductive for new work.