Green’s Dictionary of Slang

pad n.2

[SE pad, a mattress; best known in 20C+ in drug context, it was orig. used for the bed or couch on which an opium smoker could recline; it was then applied to an opium den, and was subseq. a beatnik term for a place where one could smoke cannabis]

1. [18C+] a bed.

2. [1930s+] a place, house or apartment, e.g. a prostitute’s room.

3. [1930s+] (also pads) a padded cell, a strip cell.

4. [1940s+] (US Und.) a cell.

5. see padding ken under pad v.1

In compounds

padhouse (n.)

[1930s–40s] (US black) one’s house, one’s home.

pad money (n.) (also pad dough)

[1900s–50s] (US) enough money to obtain accommodation for one night or admission into an opium den.

pad room (n.) [note carnival jargon pad room, a waiting room for performers]

[1930s–50s] (drugs) a room in which drug users can gather and use their drugs.

In phrases

pad down (v.) (also pad out)

[1930s+] (US) to go to bed, to sleep.

pad of cold cream (n.)

[1940s] (US black/Southern) an ice-cream parlour.

pad of dry scarfs (n.) [scarf n.]

[1940s] (US black/Southern) a grocery store.

pad of galloping snapshots (n.)

[1940s] (US black/Southern) a cinema.

pad of stiffs (n.) [stiff n.1 (1)]

[1940s] (US black) a funeral parlour.

pad of stitches (n.) [SE (surgical) stitches]

[1940s–70s] (US black) a hospital.

pad of togs-in-the-rough (n.) (also pad of togs-in-rough) [togs n. (1) + SE in the rough, unfinished]

[1940s] (US black/Southern) a tailor’s shop.

pad of wet scarfs (n.) (also pad of wet scarf) [scarf n.]

[1940s] (US black/Southern) a restaurant.

repent pad (n.) [a woman who visits may ‘repent of her sins’ later]

[1940s–70s] (US black) a bachelor’s apartment.

squat pad (n.) [squat v. (1)] [1940s] (US black)

1. a lobby, a lounge.

2. a stool; a chair.