Green’s Dictionary of Slang

drum n.5

[the shape]

1. [mid-19C+] (Aus.) a pack; thus carry the drum, to be a swagman n.2 (1)

2. [late 19C] (US) any hat but a silk one.

3. [1910s+] a tin or can in which tea etc. is made.

4. [1950s] (UK prison) a primitive and illicitly constructed cooking stove, using a small tin bowl, a basic adjustment lever and as a wick a hospital bandage, rubbed with mutton fat.

In phrases

drum up

see separate entries.

hump one’s drum (v.) [hump v.1 (3d)]

[mid-19C–1900s] to carry a pack.