From the September 4, 1903 edition of The Sun, a game:

          New Trick of the Newsboys.

A Live Mouse on a String to Stir Up the Bulletin Watchers.

The Park row newsboys have had their fun on yacht race days, but they got it most from the crowds that watched the bulletin boards. All that was needed was a stick and a piece of thread to which was tied a live mouse.

Armed with this outfit a boy crept up behind the chosen victim, then waited until he raised his eyes to the bulletin. Holding the stick high above the man’s head the boy let the wriggling mouse descend in front of the man’s eyes. So quickly was the thing done that few persons’ nerves could stand the shock. Then the boy passed on to the next victim, some of his pals in the meantime keeping a sharp look-out for the police.