(Excerpted from Reno Divorce Glossary, THE DIVORCE SEEKERS: A Photo Memoir of a Nevada Dude Wrangler by William L. McGee and Sandra McGee.)
The Spare The euphemistic name for the man or woman a divorce seeker brought with them to Reno for six weeks. The divorce seeker provided accommodations for “the spare” and usually intended to marry them when the divorce was final. Another term for “the spare” was “the cousin”. “Spares” and “cousins” kept the divorce seekers company during the six week residency period.
Alimony Park The park across the street from the Washoe County Courthouse.
Bridge of Sighs The Truckee River Bridge where divorcees were said to toss their wedding rings into the Truckee River.
Divorce From the Latin divortium, to turn different ways, to separate.
Divorcé A man divorced
Divorcée A woman divorced
Divorce Capital of the World Reno, Nevada
Divorce Mecca Reno
Divorce Mill Reno
Divorce Trade Reno
Divorce Ranch A term used by the national media during the quickie divorce era for a dude ranch catering to divorce seekers, usually from the wealthy or upper-classes.
Divorcée Special Any train bringing divorce seekers to Reno
Divorce Seekers Males or females coming to Reno for a six-week divorce.
Going Reno A term for divorce seekers on the loose in Reno.
Golden Age of Divorce 1930s – 1960s. Also: Heyday of Divorce.
Graduation Day The day a divorce seeker — or “graduate” as they were called — receives their divorce decree.
I’m Going to Reno! A popular phrase used by a wife or husband to announce to their spouse that they’re going to Reno for a divorce.
Quickie Divorce A divorce granted after a six-week residency in Nevada.
“The Reno” A type of bra that both “separates and supports.” The idea is attributed to Ruth Lusch, a colorful Reno publicist in the late 1940s.
Reno Divorce Colony The Reno social set composed of locals and visiting divorce seekers.
Reno-vation A term coined by Walter Winchell for the change that despondent spouses went through in Reno. Also: “Reno-vated” and “Get Reno-vated.”
Separation Center of the West Reno
Severance Stay Six weeks in Reno
Sin City Reno
Six-weekers Divorce seekers
State of Easy Divorce Nevada
The Cure Synonym for divorce. Also: “To Take the Cure”.
The Separator Washoe County Courthouse
The Women’s Exchange Washoe County Courthouse
Widow’s Corner The Corner Bar at the Riverside Hotel, located down the street from the Washoe County Courthouse, where the Reno divorce colony met.