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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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THE REASON BELL BOTTOM PANTS WERE USED IN THE NAVY WAS THEY COULD
ROLL THEM UP EASIER WHEN SAILORS HAD TO SWAB THE DECKS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DEARBORN

James Callow Keyword(s): ETYMOLOGY

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- F535
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Measure of time Working
ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- Dress Lower body and legs

Date learned: 10-17-1972

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BELIEF

THERE ARE CUFFS ON PANTS BECAUSE ENGLISH GENTLEMAN FARMERS USED
TO ROLL UP THEIR TROUSERS WHEN THEY WENT TO WORK IN THE FIELDS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): FUNCTION

Subject headings: ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- Dress Lower body and legs

Date learned: 11-05-1968

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WHEN I WANT MY TRUE LOVE BY ME
I SHAPE MY SHOES INTO A T.

Submitter comment: THIS IS DONE TO BRING YOUR LOVER TO YOUR SIDE. YOU SAY THIS AFTER
YOU HAVE ARRANGED YOUR SHOES SO THAT THE TOE OF THE RIGHT SHOE
TOUCHES THE MIDDLE OF THE LEFT SHOE.
INFORMANT REMEMBERS READING ABOUT THIS IN A MAGAZINE.

Where learned: OHIO ; DEFIANCE

James Callow Keyword(s): POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- Dress Lower body and legs
BELIEF -- Marriage
BELIEF -- Emblem

Date learned: 02-00-1982

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CHASTITY BELT

WITHIN THE INDIAN TRIBE, THE WOMEN WEAR A CHASTITY BELT TO PREVENT
HERSELF FROM BECOMING TOUCHED, SOILED, OR DIRTY. VIRGINITY IS
ESSENTIAL WITHIN THIS TRIBE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- Dress Lower body and legs

Date learned: 11-00-1982

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WHY DO SAILOR UNIFORMS HAVE THIRTEEN
BUTTONS ON THEIR PANTS?
THEY REPRESENT THE ORIGINAL THIRTEEN
COLONIES.

Submitter comment: MY HUSBAND GAVE ME THIS EXPLANATION.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): BUTTONS

Subject headings: 686 Specific number by specific number being described
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- F535
ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- Dress Lower body and legs

Date learned: 10-00-1987

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Friendship bracelets

Friendship bracelets consist of thread braided
together to form a bracelet. These bracelets
represent your friendship to that particular
person. They are usually worn around your wrist or
around your ankle.
You will need embroidery thread, two or more safety
pins, and a pillow or cushion. You also have to know
how many colors you want and how wide you want the
bracelet.
In order to start the bracelet you have to cut the
thread. A good standard length is two arm lengths.
Even if the bracelet is small you still want long
thread because it is easier to work with and you
don't have to worry about running out.
Once the thread is cut you have to arrange the
colors into the order that you want them. This is
also the time to decide how thick you want the
bracelet to be. If you would like a color to be
thicker then put two strands of that color next to
each other. Usually what people do is to use four
colors with two strands apiece for a good standard
thickness.
Now that you have all of your strands and colors in
the order you like, tie them together. A note of
caution, leave about two inches of open thread before
you tie the knot. This extra two inches is so you can
tie it together when you're done.
After the knot is tied, place the threads on the
pillow. The knot should be furthest away from you and
safety pinned to the pillow. Once the knot is pinned
to the pillow separate the strands into the desired
order and make sure they aren't too close together.
If they are close together there is a chance that
you may get the color order confused and the
bracelet would be in a different color order than
you would want them.
Now you are ready to begin. Put the pillow either
on your lap or on a table. You can begin either on
the left and work to your right, or you can begin
on your right and work to the left. Right handed
people usually find it easier to work from the left
and work towards the right.
These instructions will be from the left to the right.
Pick up the thread farthest to the left with your
left hand and pick up the string next to it with
your right hand. Cross the left string over the
right to make a loop. Pull the end of the left
string through the loop to make a knot - but slide
the knot as far as it will go towards the pinned
knot. Make sure it is secure. A word of caution:
If your knots are too tight the bracelet will begin
to twist in a spiral after a few rows have been
completed. This makes the bracelet very difficult
to work with. However, if the knots are too loose
the bracelet will lose the separation of colors,
creating a blended look. Finally you want to hold
the right hand string firmly, pulling it towards
you. This is so the left string will completely
cover the right hand string. Otherwise, the
different colors will bleed through creating a
speckled look.
Once the first knot is made repeat the process of
crossing over and looping with the same two strands.
After two knots have been made set the string on the
right down.
The string in the left hand stays there. The strand
that just received the two knots should be the one
farthest to the left. Now the thread in the left
hand moves to the next thread on the right. The right
hand thread then makes two knots on that one. This
process is continued until all the threads have two
knots in them and the thread farthest to your right
is in your hand.
Once you set down the furthest thread on the right,
you begin the whole process over again using the
thread on the left until that becomes the furthest
one on the right. Continue the rows like this until
you have the desired length. Another note to ease
the process of making the knots: After a few rows
are completed you may want to pin the completed
part to the pillow in order to keep it stationary.
Now that you have reached the desired length, take
all the threads and tie them in a knot, similar to
the one at the top. This knot should be as close to
the rows as possible and be very tight to prevent
the bracelet from falling apart.
Finally, find your friend and tie the bracelet
around his / her wrist or ankle, then cut the extra
thread off.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; GROSSE POINTE

James Callow Keyword(s): JEWELRY

Subject headings: ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- Weaving material For costuming in dance or drama, see C484.
ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- Dress Overall body coverUpper body and arms
ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- Dress Lower body and legs

Date learned: 00-00-1986

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Turn a piece of silver in your pocket upon seeing
a full moon & your wish will come true.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; JACKSON

Subject headings: ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- Dress Lower body and legs
BELIEF -- Measure of quality Monetary systemMoneyWealth
BELIEF -- Prayer
BELIEF -- P753

Date learned: 00001980S

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Long Johns (long underwear)

Long underwear is worn the winter months under your clothes
to protect you from the cold.

Data entry tech comment:

Updated by TRD

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): CLOTHING ; Cold ; Fashion ; Layers ; Warmth ; WINTER

Subject headings: ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- Dress Lower body and legs

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Entry filtered.

Historical record from James Callow Folklore Archive.

I HAD OBSERVED THAT THE PUERTO RICAN PEASANTRY (JIBAROS) WERE
VERY (UNDERLINED) CLEAN PEOPLE. THEIR SHACKS, WHILE
REFLECTING AN EXTREME LEVEL OF POVERTY, WERE SPOTLESS. THE
CHILDREN WERE DRESSED IN CLOTHES WHICH SHOWED THAT SOMEBODY
CARED. THEY WERE STARCHED AND IRONED WITH GREAT CARE. THE
BOYS INVARIABLY WORE LITTLE SPORT SHIRTS WHICH LOOKED NEW, AND
MUST HAVE COST A LARGE PORTION OF THE FAMILY'S INCOME. KNOWING
HOW THESE PEOPLE VALUED THEIR MALE CHILDREN, I COULDN'T HELP
WONDERING WHY THE LITTLE BOYS (UNDER FOUR) ALWAYS RAN AROUND
IN THEIR IMMACULATE SHIRTS--ONLY. NEVER DID THEY WEAR ANY
GARMENT ON THE LOWER PART OF THE BODY. WHY--IF THEY COULD
AFFORD SHIRTS, WHY NOT PANTS?
IT IS THE BELIEF THAT A BOY WILL BE MACHO (VIRILE) IF THE
SUN IS ALLOWED TO SHINE ON HIS GENITALIA AS MUCH OF THE TIME
AS POSSIBLE WHILE HE IS LITTLE. LITTLE GIRLS ARE ALWAYS
COVERED UP.

Data entry tech comment:

Updated by TRD

Where learned: PUERTO RICO ; SANTURCE

Keyword(s): Genitalia ; Machismo ; MASCULINITY ; Peasants ; Poor ; Puerto Rico ; Sunshine

James Callow Keyword(s): CLEANLINESS ; SEX

Subject headings: ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- Dress Lower body and legs
BELIEF -- P566

Date learned: 00001963 ca.

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showing 10 items

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