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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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WHY THE NERGO IS BLACK?

NOAH HAD TWO SONS, A YOUNGER SON AND A OLDER SON. ONE NIGHT
NOAH CAME HOME DRUNK. THE OLDEST SON HAD A GIRLFRIEND OVER, AND HE
WAS EMBARARASS TO SEE HIS FATHER DRUNK. HE INTRODUCED HIS FATHER AS
HIS UNCLE. NOAH WAS NOT AS DRUNK AS HIS SON THOUGHT HE WAS, BECAUSE
HE TOLD HIS SON YOU MUST HAVE FORGOTTEN WHO I AM. I AM NOT YOUR
UNCLE. I AM YOUR FATHER. HE WAS SO ASHAMED OF HIS FATHER UNTIL HE
TOLD HIM TO TAKE HIS DRUNK SELF TO BED. MEANWHILE, GOD WAS LISTENING
AND WATCHING WHAT WAS HAPPENING. NOAH TOLD HIS OLDEST SON THAT GOD
PUNISHES THOSE WHO DO NOT RESPECT THEIR ELDERS. NOAH WENT TO BED.
THE NEXT DAY NOAH'S OLDEST SON WAS ARGUING WITH HIS YOUNGEST BROTHER
ABOUT THE INCIDENT, WHICH HAD HAPPEN THE NIGHT BEFORE, AND THE YOUNG-
EST SON WAS TAKING THE SIDE OF HIS FATHER. THE ARGUEMENT GOT SO
FEROCIOUS UNTIL GOD STEP IN AND TOLD THE OLDEST SON HE WAS WRONG
AND WOULD BE PUNISHED FOR SASHING HIS FATHER. THEREFORE, HE WAS
CURSED AND MADE BLACK. THE BLACKNESS STOOD FOR THE EVIL HE HAD DONE.
GOD TOLD THE YOUNGEST SON, HE WOULD BE BLESSED FOR NOT BEING ASHAMED
OF HIS FATHER, AND HE WAS MADE WHITE, TO STAND FOR THE GOODNESS HE
HAD DONE.

Submitter comment:

I CAN NOT REMEMBER WHO TOLD ME THIS STORY, BUT I KNOW I HEARD IT
DOWN SOUTH.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI ; MERIDIAN

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Creation and Order of Human Life
PROSE NARRATIVE -- Religious hero
BELIEF -- Body part Senses

Date learned: 09-00-1960

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THE ORIGIN OF MANKIND

THREE MEN WENT BEFORE THE GREAT WENDAY TO TELL HIM OF THEIR NEEDS.
THE FIRST ONE SAID, "I WOULD LIKE A HORSE." THE SECOND SAID "I WOULD
LIKE SOME DOGS TO GO HUNTING IN THE BUSH.", THE THIRD MAN SAID "I
WOULD LIKE A WOMAN TO REFRESH MYSELF."
THE GREAT WENDAY FULFILLED THEIR DESIRES; TO THE FIRST HE GAVE A
HORSE, TO THE SECOND SOME DOGS, TO THE LAST A WOMAN.
THE THREE MEN DEPARTED, BUT ON THEIR WAY HOME A GREAT RAIN CAME,
FORCING THEM TO SLEEP FOR THREE DAYS IN THE BRUSH. NEITHER THE
HORSE NOR THE DOGS WERE OF MUCH USE THEN. THE WOMAN HOWEVER
PREPARED THE MEALS FOR ALL THREE. THE MEN SAID, "LET'S GO BACK TO
WENDAY" AND THEY DID.
THEY ALL WANTED WOMEN NOW. WENDAY WAS KIND ENOUGH TO CHANGE THE
HORSE AND DOGS INTO WOMEN. THE MEN RETURNED HOME. HOWEVER THE
WOMAN WHO CAME FROM THE HORSE WAS GLUTTONOUS, THE ONE WHO CAME
FROM THE DOG WAS MEAN. BUT THE FIRST WOMAN, THE ORIGINAL ONE, WAS
GOOD, SHE IS THE MOTHER OF MANKIND.

Data entry tech comment: COLLECTOR'S SPELLING CORRECTED BY KEYPUNCHER.

Where learned: PENNSYLVANIA ; WARMINSTER

Subject headings: Favorites
PROSE NARRATIVE -- Creation and Order of Human Life

Date learned: NOT RECORDED BY COLLECTOR

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STORY OF CREATION

WHEN GOD MADE THE WORLD IT WAS LIKE BAKING BREAD. FIRST HE PUT
IT IN THE OVEN AND IT WAS OVERCOOKED. THESE ARE THE BLACK PEOPLE.
THEN HE PUT SOME IN AGAIN AND IT WASN'T COOKED ENOUGH. THESE ARE
THE WHITE RACES. THEN GOD SAID,"WELL I'LL TRY ONCE MORE AND IT
WILL BE JUST RIGHT." AND IT CAME OUT JUST RIGHT. THIS IS THE
BROWN RACE.

Submitter comment:

THIS STORY IS TOLD TO THE CHILDREN IN THE PHILIPPINES

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Creation and Order of Human Life

Date learned: 11-00-1970

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GOD KEEPS A SCROLL ON EVERY LITTLE CHILD. EVERYTIME THE CHILD DOES
SOMETHING BAD OR TELLS A LIE, GOD PUTS A BIG BLACK X BESIDE THE
CHILD'S NAME.

Submitter comment: FROM HER MOTHER, CATHERINE ALDRICH, PORT HURON , MICH.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Creation and Order of Human Life

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LEARNING HOW TO COOK

DURING CAVEMEN DAYS, A BOY WAS RUNNING AROUND THE FIRE WITH A
PIECE OF RAW MEAT HANGING ON A STICK. HE ACCIDENTALLY DROPPED
THE MEAT INTO THE FIRE. HE WAS SO HUNGRY, HE DIDN'T WANT
THE MEAT TO GO TO WASTE SO HE RESCUED IT FROM THE FLAMES.
HE THEN BEGAN TO EAT THE "COOKED" MEAT. HE THOUGHT IT WAS
DELICIOUS} AND THAT IS HOW MAN LEARNED THE VALUE OF EATING
THEIR FOOD COOKED.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): CAVEMEN ; COOKING ; FIRE ; FOOD ; MYTH

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Creation and Order of Human Life

Date learned: 02-18-1970

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SEX LIFE AND ITS RAMIFICATIONS

Historical record from James Callow Folklore Archive.

WHEN MAN WAS FIRST MADE HE WAS GIVEN ONLY 20 YEARS OF NORMAL SEX
LIFE. NATURALLY HE WAS HORRIFIED -- ONLY 20 YEARS?
THE MONKEY TOO, WAS GIVEN ONLY 20 YEARS BUT HE REPLIED
"TEN YEARS WAS ENOUGH", SO MAN ASKED FOR THE OTHER TEN YEARS AND
IT WAS GIVEN TO HIM. THE LION WAS ALSO GIVEN 20 YEARS BUT HE TOO
SAID TEN YEARS WAS ENOUGH. AGAIN MAN ASKED FOR THE OTHER TEN YEARS
AND THE LION SAID "OF COURSE". THEN CAME THE DONKEY, HE ALSO WAS
GIVEN 20 YEARS BUT LIKE THE OTHERS TEN YEARS WAS ENOUGH. AND MAN,
AGAIN ASKED FOR THE OTHER TEN YEARS AND IT WAS GIVEN TO HIM. MM
THIS EXPLAINS WHY MAN TODAY HAS 20 YEARS OF NORMAL SEX LIFE,
10 YEARS OF MONKEYING AROUND, 10 YEARS OF LION ABOUT IT, AND 10
YEARS OF MAKING AN ASS OF HIMSELF.

Where learned: BIRMINGHAM ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

Keyword(s): ANIMALS ; HUMOR ; MYTH ; SEX ; SURPRISE ENDING ; WORD PLAY

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Creation and Order of Human Life

Date learned: 11-00-1968

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AH SWEET MYSTERY OF LIFE

Historical record from James Callow Folklore Archive.

IT SEEMS THAT WHEN THE CREATOR WAS MAKING THE WORLD, HE CALLED
MAN ASIDE AND BESTOWED UPON HIM 20 YEARS OF NORMAL SEX LIFE.
MAN WAS HORRIFIED} ONLY 20 YEARS OF NORMAL SEX LIFE? BUT THE
CREATOR WOULDN'T BUDGE. THAT WAS ALL HE WOULD GIVE HIM. THEN
HE CALLED THE MONKEY AND GAVE HIM 20 YEARS. BUT I DON'T NEED 20
YEARS, 10 IS ENOUGH, PROTESTED THE MONKEY. MAN SPOKE UP AND SAID,
CAN I HAVE HIS OTHER 10 YEARS? THE MONKEY GRACIOUSLY AGREED.
NEXT HE CALLED THE LION AND GAVE HIM 20 YEARS, BUT HE, TOO, NEEDED
ONLY 10 AND MAN AGAIN ASKED, CAN I HAVE THE OTHER 10? AND THE LION
ROARED, OF COURSE. ALONG CAME THE DONKEY AND HE WAS GIVEN 20 YEARS
BUT LIKE THE OTHERS, 10 WERE ENOUGH. SO MAN ASKED FOR THE SPARE 10
YEARS AND GOT THEM. ALL OF WHICH EXPLAINS WHY MAN HAS 20 YEARS
OF NORMAL SEX LIFE, 10 YEARS OF MONKEYING AROUND, 10 YEARS OF LION
ABOUT IT, AND 10 YEARS OF MAKING AN ASS OF HIMSELF.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT ; RECEIVED IN MAIL

James Callow Keyword(s): PUN: LION AND LYING ; SLANG FOR MAKING HIMSELF LOOK FOOLISH (AN ASS OF HIMSELF). ; SLANG: MONKEYING AROUND FOR DALLIANCE.

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Creation and Order of Human Life

Date learned: 00-00-1963

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INDIAN MYTH

AN OLD INDIAN MYTH SAYS THAT WHEN GOD WISHED TO GIVE DIFFERENT
COLORS TO ALL THE PEOPLE OF THE EARTH, HE ASKED THEM ALL TO MEET
HIM IN A SPECIAL PLACE AT ELEVEN O'CLOCK ONE MORNING. ALL THE
PEOPLE SHOWED UP AND WERE GIVEN COLORS EXCEPT FOR ONE GROUP WHO
WERE TOO SNOBBISH AND SELF-CENTERED TO COME. THEY WERE NOT GIVEN
ANY COLOR AND THEY BECAME THE WHITE RACE.

Submitter comment:

THE INDIAN MYTH WAS COLLECTED ON THE UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT CAMPUS
ALTHOUGH IT WAS LEARNED IN HIGHLAND PARK, MICHIGAN

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT ; CAMPUS

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Creation and Order of Human Life

Date learned: CA00001960S

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ANCIENT GREEK MYTH

ONE DAY, APOLLO'S SON, AGAINST HIS FATHER'S WISHES, TOOK THE GREAT
SUN CHARIOT OUT BY HIMSELF AND BROUGHT IT SO CLOSE TO THE GROUND
HE ALMOST CRASHED. THE PEOPLE HE PASSED OVER IN THE SUN CHARIOT
WERE CHARRED AND THEY BECAME THE BLACK RACE.

Submitter comment:

GREEK MYTH WAS COLLECTED AT THE UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT CAMPUS
BUT THE MYTH WAS LEARNED IN HIGHLAND PARK, MICHIGAN.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT ; CAMPUS

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Creation and Order of Human Life

Date learned: CA00001960S

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Children's Creation Story

God was a great chef and one day he decided to make a human
being. After he rolled out the dough, he took a cookie cutter and
cut out the image of man modeled after himself. He put it into
the oven to bake but He overcooked it. It was all burnt and
black. He did not want to throw it away because He had created it
so He set it aside to cool. He made another one and this time He
undercooked it and it was white and pasty but he didn't want to
throw it away because he had created it, so He set it aside to
cool. The third one that he made He watched it and it cooked to a
golden brown. He took it from the oven and laid it next to the
others to cool. He looked at the three one was white, one was
black, and one was golden brown. God had created each in his
image and all were good.

Submitter comment: Jennifer's grandmother, Linda Miller, told her this story when
she was a little girl. Her grandmother told her it was a
religious folktale of how the different ethnic groups came about.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; Sandusky

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Creation and Order of Human Life

Date learned: 00-00-1975

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