: a car usually at the rear of a freight train for the use of the train crew
Word History of CABOOSE
Caboose is now a railroading word, but its origins lie at sea. When it first appeared in English, in the 1700s, caboose referred to a kitchen—or in sailors' language, a galley—on a ship used in trading. (A train's caboose serves the needs of the crew, just as the galley of a ship does.) The ship's caboose was at first a sort of cabin enclosing a cooking fire on the ship's deck. Caboose was borrowed from Dutch kabuis or kombuis, perhaps a compound word with huis, “house,” as its second part.