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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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POLISH CUSTOM

WHEN THE BRIDE AND GROOM COME INTO THE HALL SOMEONE MEETS THEM
AT THE DOOR WITH A PIECE OF DRY BREAD AND SALT, AND THEY EAT IT.
IT IS A CUSTOM SO THEY WILL NEVER GO HUNGRY AND THAT THEY WILL
ALWAYS BE ABLE TO FACE HARDSHIPS TOGETHER.

Submitter comment: LEARNED FROM HER IN-LAWS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; Mount Clemens

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Mineral
BELIEF -- Marriage

Date learned: 03-20-1967

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BELIEF

IF YOU SPILL SALT ACCIDENTALLY, QUICKLY THROW SOME OVER YOUR LEFT
SHOULDER AND MAKE A WISH. BY RIGHTS, IT SHOULD COME TRUE.

Submitter comment: I HEARD THIS BELIEF FROM MY IRISH MATERNAL GRANDMOTHER WHO TOLD
IT TO ME FIFTEEN YEARS AGO WHEN I ACCIDENTALLY DROPPED SALT IN
HER KITCHEN.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; BIRMINGHAM

James Callow Keyword(s): POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Body part Senses
BELIEF -- Mineral
BELIEF -- Prayer

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JAMAICAN SUPERSTITION

IF YOU HAVE COMPANY AND YOU WISH THAT SOMEONE WOULD LEAVE, STAND
IN BACK OF THAT PERSON WITH A BROOM. HOLD IT UPSIDE-DOWN AND
SPRINKLE SALT AND PEPPER INTO IT. THE PERSON WILL LEAVE ALMOST
IMMEDIATELY.

Submitter comment: LEARNED FROM A LADY FRIEND FROM JAMAICA.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; JAMAICA

James Callow Keyword(s): POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: Food Drink -- Flavoring Spice
BELIEF -- Mineral
BELIEF -- Street Trip Relations between relatives, friends, host and guest Social class Rank

Date learned: 01-01-1964

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INDIAN LEGEND: ARIZONA

TWO INDIAN TRIBES WERE INVOLVED IN A BATTLE, ONE TRIBE WAS APACHE.
THE APACHES WERE TRAPPED ON A CLIFF, AND RATHER THAN SURRENDER,
THEY LEAPED TO THEIR DEATH. LATER THE FEMALE MEMBERS CAME TO
MOURN THEIR DEAD. THE TEARS OF THE WOMEN TURNED INTO A BLACK
GLASS-LIKE STONE WHICH IS NOW CALLED APACHE TEARS. THE ROCK
LOOKS LIKE IT CONTAINS A TEAR.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; WAYNE

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Explanation of a name
ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- Metal Stone Bone Precious stone Gem
BELIEF -- Mineral
BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial

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CAVES OF THE BLOODY CHIEFS

THE PICTURED ROCKS EXTEND EASTWARD ALONG THE LAKE SUPERIOR SHORE-
LINE FROM MUNISING. SOME OF THE VARIOUS FORMATIONS IN THE ROCKS
ARE NAMED. THE CAVES OF THE BLOODY CHIEFS ARE SO NAMED BECAUSE
INDIAN CHIEFS SUPPOSEDLY TORTURED THEIR VICTIMS THERE. THEY
WOULD BE BOUND AND LEFT FOR THE WAVES TO DASH THEM TO PIECES. THE
ROCK OF THE CAVES IS BRIGHTLY COLORED BY MINERAL SEEPAGE, MOSTLY
IRON.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DEARBORN

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Explanation of a name
BELIEF -- Mineral
BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial

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IF YOU WANT TO KEEP A PERSON OUT OF YOUR HOUSE, THROW SOME SALT
BEHIND THEM WHEN THEY LEAVE THE HOUSE

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): MAGICAL CONTROL OF WOULD-BE VISITORS

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Mineral
BELIEF -- Street Trip Relations between relatives, friends, host and guest Social class Rank

Date learned: 10-00-1974

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SALT

NEVER WIPE SALT OFF THE TABLE, BLOWIT OFF,
OR YOU WILL HAVE BAD LUCK.

Where learned: HOME ; MICHIGAN ; DEARBORN

James Callow Keyword(s): SPILLED SALT

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Mineral
BELIEF -- Product or activity of man or animal
BELIEF -- Bad luck P882.17
BELIEF -- Conversions P883.17
BELIEF -- Conversions P883.22

Date learned: CA1963-1975

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TURQUOISE

WEARING TURQUOISE BRINGS GOOD LUCK.

Where learned: HOME ; MICHIGAN ; DEARBORN ;

James Callow Keyword(s): JEWELRY ORNAMENT

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Mineral
BELIEF -- Color
BELIEF -- Good luck P881.1

Date learned: CA1963-1975

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ALBATROSS

IT IS BAD LUCK FOR AN ALBATROSS TO FOLLOW A SHIP. IF SHE DOES,
SHE MUST BE SHOT WITH A GUN ARMED WITH SILVER BULLETS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALMA

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Bird
BELIEF -- Mineral
BELIEF -- Bad luck P882.32

Date learned: 03-09-1970

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FAIRY BELIEF

IN IRELAND,
THE FAIRIES WERE BAD TOO. THEY WOULD COME BY THE NIGHT AND MILK THE
COWS AND HAVE A PICNIC AND WHEN YOU CHURNED THE MILK YOU WOULD HAVE
NO BUTTER. THE ONLY WAY YOU COULD SHOOT THEM WAS TO PUT A SILVER
COIN IN THE GUN, ALONG WITH THE AMMUNITION. AT TWELVE MIDNIGHT,
THEY COULD TAKE YOU FOR A VERY LONG WALK AND KEEP YOU WALKING UNTIL
THE COCKS WOULD CROW AT 4 A.M. BUT YOU COULD FOOL THEM IF YOU
TURNED YOUR COAT INSIDE OUT AND BLESSED YOURSELF WITH THE SIGN OF
THE CROSS.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; ROCHESTER

James Callow Keyword(s): POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Fairy Elf Goblin Gnome
BELIEF -- Mineral
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications
SPEECH -- Gesture

Date learned: 03-11-1972

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BELIEF

IF YOU SPILL SALT, BE SURE TO PICK SOME OF IT UP BETWEEN THUMB
AND FIRST FINGER AND THROW IT ACROSS THE RIGHT SHOULDER. IT GOES
IN THE DEVIL'S EYES. HE WILL NOT TEMPT YOU TO DO ANYTHING WRONG.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; ROCHESTER

James Callow Keyword(s): POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Devil Demon
BELIEF -- Mineral

Date learned: 03-11-1972

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SOME JAPANESE WRESTLERS BELIEVE THAT THERE ARE EVIL SPIRITS IN
THE WRESTLING RING. TO WARD OFF THESE SPIRITS, THEY SPRINKLE SALT
IN THEIR CORNER OF THE RING.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ROYAL OAK

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Devil Demon
BELIEF -- Mineral

Date learned: 11-13-1969

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DEFINITION

CANADIANS ARE NICKLE-PLATED AMERICANS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): COMPARISON

James Callow Keyword(s): CRITICISM ; NATIONALISM

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Mineral
PROVERB -- Blason Populaire

Date learned: 09-19-1969

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RAINBOW BELIEF

THERE IS A POT OF GOLD AT THE END OF EVERY RAINBOW.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Mineral
BELIEF -- Weather sign or control P890.7

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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RAINBOW BELIEF

IF YOU SEE A RAINBOW AND WALK TO THE END OF IT, YOU WILL
FIND A POT OF GOLD.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Cloud Fog Mist Rain Hail Ice Snow Frost Dew
BELIEF -- Mineral
BELIEF -- Good luck
BELIEF -- Weather sign or control P890.7

Date learned: 11-00-1969

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RAINBOW BELIEF

FIND THE END OF THE RAINBOW, AND YOU WILL FIND A POT OF GOLD.

Where learned: UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Cloud Fog Mist Rain Hail Ice Snow Frost Dew
BELIEF -- Mineral

Date learned: 11-25-1969

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RAINBOW BELIEF

IT HAS BEEN ONE OF THE OLD FOLKISMS THAT AFTER A RAIN, WHEN THE
RAINBOW COMES OUT, IF YOU GO TO THE END OF IT, YOU WILL FIND
A POT OF GOLD OR
A SACK OF MONEY.

Submitter comment:

I ONCE BELIEVED THIS BUT NOW THAT I HAVE GROWN OLDER I FOUND THAT
IT IS AN OLD FOLKISM.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): BELIEF ; DISBELIEF

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Cloud Fog Mist Rain Hail Ice Snow Frost Dew
BELIEF -- Mineral
BELIEF -- Weather sign or control P890.7

Date learned: 02-10-1972

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SILVER BELIEF

IF YOU BURY SILVER, IT TURNS WITH THE EARTH, AND WILL
MOVE TO A DIFFERENT PLACE.

Where learned: DETROIT ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Planet
BELIEF -- Mineral
BELIEF -- P47O
BELIEF -- Sign or prediction through Observation of galactic or celestial bodies

Date learned: 12-00-1971

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SUPERSTITION OF A MOUNTAIN

THERE IS A PLACE IN ARIZONA NAMED SUPERSTITION MOUNTAIN. WHENEVER
ANYONE WENT THERE LOOKING FOR GOLD, THEY NEVER RETURNED.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Formation
BELIEF -- Mineral

Date learned: 10-01-1968

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IRISH BELIEF

IN BLARNEY CASTLE THERE IS A HIGH ROCK CALLED THE BLARNEY STONE.
THE BLARNEY STONE IS DIFFICULT TO REACH, BUT THE IRISH BELEIVE
THAT IF A PERSON IS ABLE TO KISS THE STONE WITH HIS LIPS, THE
FEAT GIVES THE TOUNGUE THE POWER OF FLATTERY AND OF COMPLIMENTARY
SPEECH.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Mineral
SPEECH -- Gesture

Date learned: 11-03-1969

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