The following passage from Charles Portis’ True Grit describes the first time young Mattie Ross, Marshall “Rooster” Cogburn and Texas Ranger LaBouef meet face to face:

Rooster was eating candy.  He said, “Set down, sis, and have a piece of taffy.  This jaybird calls himself LaBoeuf.  He claims he is a State Ranger in Texas.  He come up here to tell us how the cow eat the cabbage.”

I said, “I know who he is.”

“He says he is on the track of our man.  He wants to throw in with us.”

“I know what he wants and I have already told him we are not interested in his help.  He has gone behind my back.”

“What is it?” said Rooster.  “What is the trouble?”

“There is no trouble except of his own making.” said I.  “He made a proposition and I turned it down.  That is all.  We don’t need him.”

“Well now, he might come in handy,” said Rooster.  “It will not cost us anything.  He has a big-bore Sharps carbine if we are jumped by buffaloes or elephants.  He says he knows how to use it.  I say let him go.  We might run into some lively work.”

“No, we don’t need him,” said I.  “I have already told him that.  I have got my horse and everything is ready.  Have you seen to all your business?”

Rooster said, “Everything is ready but the grub and it is working.  The chief deputy wanted to know who had done them [expense] sheets.  He said he would put you on down there at good wages if you wanted a job.  Potter’s wife is fixing the eats.  She is not what I call a good cook but she is good enough and she needs the money.”

LaBoeuf said, “I reckon I must have the wrong man.  Do you let little girls hooraw you, Cogburn?”

Rooster turned his cold right eye on the Texan.  “Did you say hooraw?”

“Hooraw,” said LaBoeuf.  “That was the word.”

“Maybe you would like to see some real hoorawing?”

“There is no hoorawing in it,” said I.  “The marshall is working for me.  I am paying him.”

There does not appear to be any definition of “hooraw” readily available on the intertoobs.  In this context, I take it to be an almost untranslatable term for bullying from a position of only apparent, without real, strength.  Thus, to me it also has underlying connotations of manipulation, bluster, deceit and false advantage.

At any rate, it is not at all lost on me that both Mattie from the book and the eldest of the port swiller gels are fourteen.   And I find that I have had to say something to Mrs. R along the lines of “That girl is trying to hooraw you” often enough that Mrs. R now knows exactly what I mean, and is indeed beginning to employ the word herself.