From the mid 19th century to about the mid 20th century, there were a lot of advertisements in newspapers and magazines for something called odd pants. Judging from context, I suspect they were not just "unusual," which is what one would likely infer from "odd pants" in casual English today.
- The Galveston Daily News (Galveston, Texas) 1 Feb. 1923
It almost seems as if "odd pants" was as common a term as "work shoes" or "dress pants" are today.
- The Wichita Daily Eagle (Wichita, Kansas) 02 Apr 1915
The term is not in the OED or other dictionaries I consulted, and most of the instances I've found "in the wild" are from this time period ranging from about 1850 to 1950, mostly in advertisements that don't provide a lot of context for understanding what "odd pants" are.
So what exactly are "odd pants?" Why are they called this? Is there a reason the term grew into and then fell out of favor so quickly? Is the term or any of its variations still used today, and I've simply been missing out?