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ADVENT WREATH

DURING ADVENT WE ALSO HAD AN ADVENT WREATH. THIS WAS ALWAYS MADE FROM
THE GREENS FROM THE EVERGREEN OUTSIDE OUR HOUSE, FOUR
WHITE CANDLES
AND HUNG WITH RED RIBBON. EVERY SUNDAY, ANOTHER CANDLE WAS LIT WHILE
SOMEONE READ THE GOSPEL FOR THAT DAY.

Data entry tech comment:

Informant and collector share the same surname and place of residence.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: 645 645.2
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Christmas Decorations
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles

Date learned: 10-07-1972

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IRISH CHRISTMAS CUSTOM

ON CHRISTMAS EVE, IN IRELAND, ALL THE CATHOLIC FAMILIES PUT A
LIGHTED CANDLE IN EVERY WINDOW IN THEIR HOUSE TO LIGHT THE WAY
FOR THE BLESSED MOTHER AND ST. JOSEPH AND SHOW THEM THAT THEY'RE
WELCOME IN THEIR HOMES.

Submitter comment:

PRACTICED IN IRELAND, 1915

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- F122
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles

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THE IRISH-AMERICANS TRADITIONALLY LEAVE A LIT CANDLE IN THE
WINDOW FROM CHRISTMAS EVE TO THE EPIPHANY TO LIGHT THE WAY
FOR THE THREE WISE MEN.

Submitter comment: NO KNOWLEDGE OF HOW THE INFORMANT LEARNED THE ITEM.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 6 Twelfth Day Epiphany
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 24 Christmas Eve
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles

Date learned: 10-04-1967

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CHRISTMAS CUSTOM

IN NEW MEXICO CANDLES IN BAGS OF SAND ARE USED INSTEAD OF ELECTRIC
LIGHTS TO DECORATE AT CHRISTMAS THE OUTSIDE OF THE HOME.

Submitter comment: LEARNED FROM HER DAUGHTER WHO IS LIVING IN NEW MEXICO.

Where learned: NEW MEXICO

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles

Date learned: 00-00-1965

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CHRISTMAS CUSTOM

HER FAMILY PUTS A CANDLE IN THEIR WINDOW AT CHRISTMAS SO CHRIST CAN
FIND HIS WAY TO THEIR HOUSE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT ; RELIGIOUS CLASS

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles

Date learned: 12-00-1965

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CHRISTMAS

DURING THE CHRISTMAS SEASON, PLACE A LIGHTED CANDLE IN THE
WINDOW SO LOST AND LONELY TRAVELERS (TRAVELLERS) CAN FIND
THEIR WAY.

Where learned: NOT RECORDED

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles

Date learned: NOT RECORDED

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CHRISTMAS CUSTOM

THE IRISH CUSTOM AT CHRISTMAS TIME IS TO LEAVE EVERY SINGLE
LIGHT IN THEIR HOME BURNING. SIGNIFICANCE IS TO LIGHT THE WAY
FOR THE SAVIOUR WHO WAS BORN ON CHRISTMAS DAY.

Where learned: PENNSYLVANIA ; SCRANTON

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles

Date learned: 04-00-1972

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CHRISTMAS CUSTOM

LOOK FOR THE FIRST STAR ON CHRISTMAS EVE SO THE TREE CAN BE LIT.
CHRIST CHILD IS BORN.

Where learned: HOME

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Christmas tree

Date learned: 11-18-1967

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Custom: Holiday

ON CHRISTMAS EVE EACH MEMBER OF THE FAMILY LIGHTS A BAYBERRY
CANDLE AND THEN MAKES A WISH. IF THE CANDLES ARE ALLOWED TO
BURN TO THE ENDS THEN THE WISH WILL COME TRUE.

Submitter comment:

THIS IS A CUSTOM CARRIED OUT IN THE INFORMANT'S FAMILY FOR
SEVERAL GENERATIONS.

Data entry tech comment:

Updated and Motifs added / 02-28-2011 / TRD

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; GROSSE POINTE

Keyword(s): Bayberry ; Candle ; CUSTOM ; FAMILY ; Herb ; holiday ; PLANT ; RELIGION ; RELIGIOUS ; SYMBOL ; WISH

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 24 Christmas Eve F122.2
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles

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MRS. BARBERO HAS A CUT CRYSTAL BOWL OF FRUIT WITH LIGHT BULBS IN
DIFFERENT PARTS OF ITS STRUCTURE. IT IS A FAMILY HEIRLOOM. ON
CHRISTMAS EVE, SHE LIGHTS IT UP. IT SYMBOLIZES GOD'S BLESSING, IN
SO FAR THAT THE FAMILY DID NOT HAVE TO PART WITH IT; THE FAMILY
HAD ADEQUATE RESOURCES TO ENJOY AT CHRISTMAS. THIS CUSTOM HAD
ITS ORIGIN SUPPOSEDLY IN ITALY.

Submitter comment: MRS. BARBERO TREASURED THIS CRYSTAL TRADITION.

Where learned: HILLSDALE

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 24 Christmas Eve
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles

Date learned: 03-17-1972

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ON CHRISTMAS EVE SOME PEOPLE LIGHT A BAYBERRY CANDLE AND IF IT BURNS
TO THE END WITHOUT BEING EXTINGUISHED IT IS SAID TO BRING GOOD LUCK.

Submitter comment: INFORMANT DOES THIS EVERY CHRISTMAS EVE.

Where learned: PENNSYLVANIA ; SCRANTON

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 24 Christmas Eve Predictions
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles
BELIEF -- Fate Destiny Luck Chance

Date learned: 02-15-1972

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CHRISTMAS

IN ITALY, THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS AND CONTINUOUSLY FOR THE NEXT
DAY, A FIRE WOULD BE KEPT GOING IN THE FIREPLACE IN ORDER TO HELP
DRY THE DIAPERS OF THE CHRIST-CHILD.

Where learned: PENNSYLVANIA ; PITTSBURGH

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles

Date learned: 11-01-1970

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CHRISTMAS CUSTOM

AT CHRISTMASTIME, AS THE RELATIVES GATHER TOGETHER ON CHRISTMAS
EVE NIGHT THE OLDEST AND THE YOUNGEST OF THE FAMILY EACH LIGHT
A CANDLE AND PLACE IT IN DESIGNATED HOLES IN THE FAMILY PINE
TREE LOG. THIS SYMBOLIZES THE UNITY BETWEEN THE OLD AND THE NEW.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles

Date learned: 11-24-1967

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CHRISTMAS CUSTOM

CHRISTMAS DECORATION LIGHTS SHOULD BE LEFT ON ALL NIGHT ON
CHRISTMAS EVE.

Submitter comment: INFORMANT HEARD THIS WHEN YOUNG (1920-1930), SAW IT PRACTICED, AND
PRACTICES IT HERSELF.

Where learned: PENNSYLVANIA ; PITTSBURGH

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles

Date learned: 10-02-1971

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SUPERSTITION

BURN A BAYBERRY CANDLE ON CHRISTMAS AND IF THE FLAME BURNS BRIGHT
AND THE LIGHT SHINES CLEAR, THEN YOU WILL BE BLESSED ALL YEAR.

Where learned: ILLINOIS ; LINCOLNSHIRE

Keyword(s): LUCK

Subject headings: Observation
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 24 Christmas Eve Predictions
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles

Date learned: 03-14-1971

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ENGLISH CHRISTMAS CUSTOM

LIGHT A BAYBERRY CANDLE ON CHRISTMAS MORNING; LET THE CANDLE BURN
ITSELF OUT. NEVER PUT THE CANDLE OUT BECAUSE THIS ACTION WILL
SPOIL ONE'S GOOD LUCK.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 24 Christmas Eve Predictions
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- FOR

Date learned: 10-01-1968

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CHRISTMAS

ON CHRISTMAS DAY, THE POLISH KEEP A LIGHTED CANDLE IN THE WINDOW
HOPING THAT THE CHRIST CHILD WILL JOIN THEM IN THE FORM OF AN
UNEXPECTED VISITOR FOR DINNER. AN EXTRA PLACE IS ALWAYS SET AT THE
CHRISTMAS DINNER TABLE FOR THE VISITOR.

Submitter comment: BACK IN POLAND

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 24 Christmas Eve Menus
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles

Date learned: 03-24-1971

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CHRISTMAS NIGHT (EVE)

ON CHRISTMAS NIGHT (EVE) IN IRELAND, CANDLES ARE LIT AND PUT ON THE
WINDOWS. THE FATHER OF THE FAMILY LEADS THE CHILDREN, FOLLOWED BY
THE MOTHER, INTO EACH ROOM TO LIGHT THE CANDLES. THE ROSARY IS
RECITED DURING THE PROCESSION, AND PRAYERS ARE SAID FOR THE DEAD, THE
LIVING AND "THE BORN TO BE." THEN FOOD IS LEFT ON THE KITCHEN TABLE
BECAUSE JESUS, MARY AND JOSEPH MAY DROP IN DURING THE NIGHT FOR
SOMETHING TO EAT. THE KITCHEN DOOR IS LEFT OPEN ALL NIGHT TO RECEIVE
THEM OR ANY OTHER TRAVELER WHO MAY NEED LODGING FOR THE NIGHT.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): FOOD CUSTOM

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 24 Christmas Eve Christmas
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles

Date learned: 11-00-1970

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HUNTS (HANS) MUFF-CHRISTMAS STORY AND BELIEF

MY FIRST RECOLLECTION OF CHRISTMAS WAS THAT AT LEAST A MONTH BEFORE
CHRISTMAS MY PARENTS WOULD SAY IF YOU AREN'T A GOOD GIRL "HUNTS MUFF
WILL GET YOU." THEY WOULD TELL US CHILDREN IF WE WOULD PRAY, HUNTS
MUFF MIGHT NOT COME. SO LONG BEFORE I KNEW ANY PRAYERS I WOULD SAY
"NA MA, NA MA." THIS WAS MY WAY OF SAYING SOME GERMAN WORD WHICH I
NEVER DID KNOW WHAT IT MEANT. BUT EVEN THO' WE PRAYED CONSTANTLY
EVERY NIGHT FOR A MONTH ABOUT A WEEK BEFORE CHRISTMAS, HUNTS MUFF
WOULD START TO COME AROUND. ONE TIME MY BROTHER CAME BURSTING INTO
THE HOUSE WITH HIS SHIRT TORN HALF OFF HIS BACK AND HUNTS MUFF RIGHT
BEHIND HIM. HE QUICKLY CLOSED THE DOOR AND HAD ALL THE REST OF US
HOLD THE DOOR AND EVEN THEN HUNTS MUFF MANAGED TO PUSH THE DOOR OPEN
A LITTLE WAYS AND WE ALL SCREAMED AND CRIED AND PUSHED ON THE DOOR
AND FINALLY HUNTS MUFF LEFT. ONE TIME WE HAD THE DOOR LOCKED AND HE
REACHED RIGHT IN AND TOOK THE KEY. ANOTHER TIME WE COULD SEE HIM
COMING ACROSS THE FIELDS, AT LEAST A MILE AWAY AND THE NEXT INSTANT
HE WAS ON THE ROOF RATTLING HIS CHAINS. WE WERE TOLD IF HUNTS MUFF
EVER GOT US, HE WOULD PUT HIS CHAIN AROUND OUR NECK AND DRAG US DOWN
THE ROAD UNTIL HE CAME TO A LAKE WHERE HE WOULD TIE A STONE ONTO THE
CHAIN AND THROW THE CHAIN AND ONE OF US INTO THE LAKE AND WE'D SINK
TO THE BOTTOM OF THE LAKE. HUNTS MUFF NEVER CAME DURING THE DAY
BUT ALWAYS AT NIGHT JUST ABOUT CHORE TIME WHICH WAS ABOUT SEVEN
O'CLOCK. I WAS TEN YEARS OLD BEFORE I KNEW THIS HUNTS MUFF WAS A
FAKE. I DON'T KNOW WHETHER WE CHILDREN JUST HAD A VIVID IMAGINATION
OR WHETHER IT WAS JUST A WELL PLANNED HOAX. THIS HUNTS MUFF COULD
GROW RIGHT IN FRONT OF YOUR EYES. EVEN WHEN I WAS TOLD THE TRUE
FACTS ABOUT HUNTS MUFF I COULDN'T BELIEVE IT BECAUSE I HAD BEEN SO
FRIGHTENED FOR SO LONG THAT THE SCAR REMAINED. THIS HUNTS MUFF WAS
EITHER A NEIGHBOR OR ONE OF MY BROTHERS WITH A BOARD ACROSS THE TOP
OF HIS HEAD AND A STOVE PIPE ON TOP OF THAT TO GIVE HEIGHT. HE
CARRIED A BIG CHAIN AND WHEN HE COULDN'T GET TO THE ROOF HE WOULD
THROW COAL UP TO MAKE IT SOUND AS THOUGH HE WAS WALKING AROUND UP
THERE. SOMETIMES IT TOOK TWO OR THREE OF MY BROTHERS TO CARRY OUT
THE HOAX. AS EACH ONE GREW UP AND KNEW WHAT WAS GOING ON THEY WOULD
PROGRESS TO HELPING IN THE HOAX. CHRISTMAS DAY MADE THE HORRORS
OF THE PAST MONTH FADE AWAY ALMOST.

Submitter comment: MRS. DIAMOND WAS THE YOUNGEST CHILD OF THIRTEEN CHILDREN. AS SHE
TOLD THIS STORY SHE USED MUCH EMPHASIS AND GESTICULATION AND IT WOULD
SEEM THAT SHE STILL BELIEVES THE FOLLOWING TALE.

Where learned: HOME

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles

Date learned: 04-02-1968

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CHRISTMAS CUSTOMS

EVERY CHRISTMAS THE FATHER OF THE HOUSE WOULD GO OUT AND GET A
BARTH (BOUGH?) OF HOLLY, BRINGING IT HOME ON HIS BACK. THE WOMEN
MEANWHILE WOULD CLEAN THE HOUSE FROM TOP TO BOTTOM. THEN HOLLY
WOULD BE PUT ALL OVER THE HOUSE. MISELTOE (MISTLETOE) WAS HUNG
AND CANDLES WERE PLACED IN EVERY WINDOW. THERE WAS NO CHRISTMAS
TREE. ON CHRISTMAS EVE THE DOOR OF THE HOUSE WOULD BE LEFT
OPEN, NO MATTER HOW COLD IT WAS, SO THAT THE BABY JESUS COULD COME
IN OUT OF THE COLD WHEN HE PASSED BY.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 24 Christmas Eve
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Lights and candles

Date learned: 11-18-1970

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