Maurice W. Graham

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Maurice W. Graham (June 3, 1917 – November 18, 2006), also known as Steam Train Maury, was the five-time holder of the title "King of the Hobos",[1] and was later known as "Patriarch of the Hobos".[2] Born to a broken home in Ohio, he was shunted from father to mother to aunt to married siblings. In 1931, at the age of 14, Graham began riding the rails as a hobo during the Great Depression. He settled in Toledo, Ohio, with his wife Wanda in the late 1930s, where he worked as a cement mason and founded a trade school for masons. During World War II, he served in the military as a medical technician. In 1969 he returned to the hobo life for another eleven years, finally retiring in 1980.[3]

Maury Graham adopted the nickname "Steam Train" in 1969, when the "Golden Spike Special" steam train came through Ohio, returning home from the 100th anniversary of the completion of the first US transcontinental railroad.[3] He was one of the founding members of the National Hobo Foundation. He also helped established the Hobo Museum in Britt, Iowa.[2]

Mr. Maurice Graham died due to complications from a stroke at the Northcrest Nursing Home in Napoleon, Ohio. He was 89.[1]


  • Tales of the Iron Road: My Life as King of the Hobos. Marlowe & Co., 1989. Reprinted in 1992. ISBN 1-56924-916-4.


  1. ^ a b "Maurice W Graham "Steam Train", Grand Patriarch of America's Hobos who has died aged 89". BBC Radio 4. 29 December 2006. Archived from the original on 11 October 2021. Retrieved 22 July 2022.
  2. ^ a b Wireman, George (January 2007). "Steam Train Maury Graham Catches the Westbound". Emmitsburg News-Journal. Archived from the original on 27 September 2007. Retrieved 22 July 2022.
  3. ^ a b "Hobo proud of traveling the rails". Toledo Blade. 20 November 2006. Archived from the original on 30 September 2007. Retrieved 22 July 2022.