Green’s Dictionary of Slang

slammer n.

1. anything or anyone exceptional [SE slam, to hit with a bang].

[UK]Farmer & Henley Sl. and Its Analogues.
[US]D. Pendleton Executioner (1973) 18: It’d be a hell of a game [...] A real grand slammer.

2. with ref. to a slammed door.

(a) (also slammers) prison; also attrib.

D. Burley in Chicago Defender 9 May 23: Back Door’s Revised Dictionary [...] the slammer — 48th St. jail.
[US]D. Burley Orig. Hbk of Harlem Jive 17: The Lane [...] came up with a kill joy, who tagged the play with a slammer issue.
[US]N. Algren Walk on the Wild Side 58: Stay out of town or them same citizens will slap you right into the crummiest slammer in Texas.
[US]P. Crump Burn, Killer, Burn! 352: That [...] speedway action you just put down rates you an automatic trip to the slammers.
[US]‘Iceberg Slim’ Mama Black Widow 221: I did a year in the slammer.
[US]C. McFadden Serial 64: Not unless you want to end up in the slammer.
[US]J. Ellroy Brown’s Requiem 108: You are Omar Gonzalez, aren’t you? If you’re not, it’s the fuzz and the slammer.
[Aus]Benjamin & Pearl Limericks Down Under 91: It has twice the glamour / Of your typical slammer.
[NZ]A. Duff One Night Out Stealing 139: Cos your kind is in and out of the slammer, more in than out, so ya lose touch, son. With reality. With what’s going on in the world.
[UK]K. Lette Llama Parlour 73: With dad in the slammer so much I’d done all the repairs around mum’s house.
[Aus]G. Disher Crosskill [ebook] [A] lot of good professionals [...] were now in the slammer.
[Ire]P. Howard The Joy (2015) [ebook] It was simple things I’d missed about home when I was in the slammer.
[UK]Indep. Mag. 3 July 25: A gent who’d spent a total of 27 years in the slammer for a wide variety of offences.
[Aus]P. Temple Dead Point (2008) [ebook] Her kid, he’s naughty, studyin at this new place, the Port Phillip college, new slammer.
[NZ]D. Looser Boobslang [U. Canterbury D.Phil. thesis] 169/1: slammer, the n. 1 prison.
[Ire]P. Howard Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nightdress 72: I don’t come down to your courtroom and tell you who to throw in the slammer.
[UK]Camden New Journal (London) 9 Oct. 12/3: Mario’s 14 hours in the ‘slammer’ was no joke.
[UK]K. Richards Life 15: All of us would be detained on felony charges - i.e., put in the slammer.
[Aus] A. Savage ‘Killing Peacocks’ in Crime Factory: Hard Labour [ebook] I was a good pool player — I’d had hours of practice in the slammer.
M.E. Fitch ‘Tommy, Who Loved to Laugh’ in ThugLit Sept. [ebook] ‘[Y]ou did nothing but take it up the ass in the slammer’.
[Aus]C. Hammer Silver [ebook] Scotty ends up in hospital, Jasper and Martin in the slammer.
[US]D. Swierczynski California Bear 211: ‘You probably used cash instead of a credit card, since you’re fresh out of the slammer’.

(b) (US black) a door.

[US]Pittsburgh Courier (PA) 27 Aug. 11/1: The jitterbugs copping their outer-vines and skimmers and trucking to the slammer to hit the ozone.
[US]D. Burley Orig. Hbk of Harlem Jive 25: While at the kitchen slammer, he kept might mum.
[US]Mezzrow & Wolfe Really the Blues 84: You had to pull up in a diamond-studded limousine [...] before the doorman would even reach for the twister to your slammer.
[US]H. Ellison ‘Sally in Our Alley’ in Gentleman Junkie (1961) 121: You know who that was at the slammer?
[US]‘Iceberg Slim’ Pimp 78: We walked to the ‘slammer’.
[US]‘Iceberg Slim’ Airtight Willie and Me 36: Bubbles, the Dane, had taken station near the front slammer.
[US](con. 1940s) Deuce Ofay Productions ‘The Jive Bible’ at 🌐 [...] Check his action – he gots a fly crutch, a diff’rent zoot suit fo’ every piece o’ seven an’ a rep dat come through de slammer trey hours befo’ he slide in.

(c) (US) a psychiatric hospital.

[US]Rigney & Smith Real Bohemia x: Will I be put in the slammer [mental hospital] if I flunk?

(d) (Aus./N.Z. prison) a (solitary confinement) cell.

[Aus]B. Ellem Doing Time 197: slammer: a prison cell.
[NZ]D. Looser Boobslang [U. Canterbury D.Phil. thesis] 169/1: slammer, the n. 2 = pound, the sense 1.

3. (N.Z. prison, also the slam) an assault.

[NZ]D. Looser Boobslang [U. Canterbury D.Phil. thesis] 169/1: slammer, the n. 3 (also slam, the) an assault.

In compounds

slammer stooge (n.)

(US Black) a ticket-taker in a theatre.

[US]Pittsburgh Courier (PA) 10 Feb. 7/1: I laid a couple of gasses on the ducat queen, picked on the pulp, mitted it to the slammer stooge and stached my frame a rester and laid my glims on the routine.

In phrases

slap the slammer (v.)

(US black) to knock on the door.

D. Burley N.Y. Amsterdam Star-News 17 May 11: Just then, the even duz boomed and somebody started slapping on the slammer.