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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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LUCK

NEVER WASTE PEANUT SHEELS ON THE GROUND, IT CAUSES FUSS.

Where learned: LOUISIANA ; New Orleans

James Callow Keyword(s): ARGUMENT QUARRELING DISCORD

Subject headings: Food Drink -- Plant food
BELIEF -- Plant
BELIEF -- Product or activity of man or animal
BELIEF -- Street Trip Relations between relatives, friends, host and guest Social class Rank

Date learned: CA11001973

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ON ASSUMPTION DAY (AUGUST 15), IF YOU BLESS FLOWERS
AND KEEP THEM IN YOUR HOUSE,
LIGHTNING WILL NOT STRIKE YOUR HOUSE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- August 15 Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
BELIEF -- Lightning Thunder
BELIEF -- Plant

Date learned: 11-00-1972

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WEARING GARLIC, OR HAVING IT IN YOUR POSSESSION DRIVES AWAY EVIL
SPIRITS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): EXORCISM

Subject headings: Food Drink -- Flavoring
BELIEF -- Devil Demon
BELIEF -- Devil Demon
BELIEF -- Plant
BELIEF -- Magic of Speech, Sign, Color

Date learned: 11-19-1972

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BUTTER CUP

PLACE A BUTTER CUP (FLOWER) UNDER A PERSONS CHIN AND IF YOU CAN SEE
A YELLOW REFLECTION ON HIS CHIN. IT MEANS HE LIKES BUTTER.

Where learned: DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): VARIANT PLANT: DANDELION

Subject headings: Food Drink -- Plant food N244.44
BELIEF -- Plant
BELIEF -- Use of Object

Date learned: 11-19-1972

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GARLIC AND HONEY

A RUSSIAN CUSTOM FOR NEW YEAR'S EVE IS TO DIP GARLIC IN HONEY AND
EAT IT. THE GARLIC TAKES THE SINS OF THE PAST YEAR AWAY. THE
HONEY SWEETENS THE BODY FOR THE NEW YEAR

Where learned: DETROIT

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 31 New Year's Eve
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20
Food Drink -- Plant food
Food Drink -- Animal product
BELIEF -- Body part Senses
BELIEF -- Insect
BELIEF -- Plant

Date learned: 11-03-1972

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EVIL SPIRITS

ITALIANS HANG GARLIC ABOVE THEIR DOOR TO KEEP EVIL SPIRITS AWAY

Where learned: DETROIT

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Ghost Spirit Phantom Specter
BELIEF -- Plant

Date learned: 11-03-1972

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PLANTING CUSTOM

IT IS A TRADITIONAL CUSTOM IN EUROPE FOR THE UPPER CLASS TO HAVE
THEIR SERVANTS PLANT THE VEGETABLE AND FLOWER GARDENS IN THE EVENING
AFTER THE SUN HAS GONE DOWN. THE HOLES ARE DUG AND WATER IS THEN
POURED INTO THEM. THE SERVANT THEN WORKS THIS TO FORM A MUDDY PASTE
IN WHICH THE YOUNG PLANTS ARE PLACED.

Submitter comment: INFORMANT LEARNED THIS FROM HER MOTHER AND SAYS THE PURPOSE OF THIS
IS TO PREVENT THE YOUNG PLANTS FROM BEING SCORCHED IN THE HOT SUN.
INFORMANT CARRIES ON THIS CUSTOM EVERY SPRING WHEN PLANTING.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; GROSSE POINTE

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- F476
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Measure of time Week Day Hour
BELIEF -- Sun
BELIEF -- Plant

Date learned: 09-25-1972

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THE DISAPPEARING TREE

WELL, THERE IS SUPPOSED TO BE A TREE OUT ON THE LAKE
UP BY 7 MILE ROAD THAT YOU CAN SEE ONLY AT NIGHTTIME. I'VE NEVER SEEN IT, BUT THEY SAID IT'S ALONE IN THE MIDDLE OF THE LAKE, AND IF YOU
SHINE YOUR CAR HEADLIGHTS ON IT, IT DISAPPEARS.

Submitter comment:

Lake St. Clair off of Jefferson Road on Lake Shore Drive near 7 Mile (Moross Road).

James Callow comment:

COLLECTOR'S SPELLING CORRECTED

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT ; 26038 State Fair

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Plant

Date learned: 10-29-1972

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CARROTS

EATING CARROTS:
1 MAKES YOUR HAIR CURLY
2 ENABLES YOU TO SEE IN THE DARK

Submitter comment: TOLD TO ME WHEN I WAS LITTLE AND MADE A FUSS OVER
EATING MY CARROTS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Plant
SPEECH -- Formula

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WHEN THE WIND IS IN THE EAST, THEN THE SAP WILL RUN THE LEAST,
WHEN THE WIND IS IN THE WEST, THEN THE SAP WILL RUN THE BEST.

Submitter comment: TOLD TO ME BY MY UNCLE.

Where learned: DETROIT

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Belief C860.466
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Belief C860.475
BELIEF -- Wind Whirlwind Hurricane Cyclone Tornado
BELIEF -- Plant

Date learned: 12-00-1972

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DURING MENSTRUATION A WOMAN CANNOT GO INTO A GARDEN BECAUSE ALL
THE PLANTS WILL WILT.

Where learned: MICHIGAN

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Plant
BELIEF -- Means of Causing or Avoiding Illness

Date learned: 10-05-1972

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NEVER PLANT POTATOES NEXT TO ONIONS BECAUSE THE ONIONS WILL GET
IN TO THE POTATOE EYES.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; JACKSON

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Plant
BELIEF -- Plant husbandry Farming

Date learned: 11-02-1972

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IF THE CORN IS NOT KNEE HIGH BY THE FOURTH OF JULY IT WILL BE
A BAD YEAR FOR CORN.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; JACKSON

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- July 4 Independence Day
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- June 21 solstice to September 22
BELIEF -- Plant
BELIEF -- Plant husbandry Farming
BELIEF -- Sign or prediction through Plants
BELIEF -- Sign or prediction through Food

Date learned: 10-01-1972

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NEW YEAR'S CUSTOM/LUCK

IF AN OLIVE OR LAUREL BRANCH IS HUNG ON THE DOOR OF A HOME ON
NEW YEAR'S DAY, THE FAMILY LIVING IN THAT HOUSE WILL HAVE
GOOD LUCK FOR THE ENTIRE YEAR.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; FARMINGTON

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 1 New Year's
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20
BELIEF -- Plant
BELIEF -- Measure of time Year
BELIEF -- Fate Destiny Luck Chance
BELIEF -- Good luck P881.1
BELIEF -- Good luck P881.42

Date learned: 09-26-1972

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DANDELION

IF YOU SEE A YELLOW SHADOW WHEN YOU PUT A DANDELION UNDER YOUR
CHIN, IT MEANS YOU LIKE BUTTER.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; BIRMINGHAM

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Plant
BELIEF -- Use of Object

Date learned: 12-04-1972

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CARROT BELIEF

EAT LOTS OF CARROTS BECAUSE THEY ARE GOOD FOR YOUR EYES. HAVE YOU
EVER SEEN A RABBIT WEARING GLASSES?

Where learned: CANADA ; ONTARIO ; DORM ; UNIVERSITY OF WINDSOR ; WINDSOR

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Mammal
BELIEF -- Plant

Date learned: 09-22-1972

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THE TRIPPING STUMP

WHEN MY MOTHER AND FATHER LIVED IN LITHUANIA, THERE WAS A FEAR
THAT THE PEOPLE OF THEIR VILLAGE HAD OF A TREE STUMP. THE STORY
WAS THAT ONE NIGHT A TERRIBLE MURDER WAS COMMITTED BY A TREE STUMP
OUTSIDE THE VILLAGE. AFTER THE MURDER PEOPLE WERE AFRAID TO GO BY
THE STUMP BECAUSE THEY BELIEVED IT WOULD STICK OUT ONE OF ITS
ROOTS AND TRIP PEOPLE AS THEY WALKED BY.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Plant

Date learned: 10-03-1972

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WHEN TRAVELING ON THE HIGHWAY PUT GARLIC CLOVES IN YOUR BOSOM
FOR A SAFE TRIP.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

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

Date learned: 09-00-1972

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MISTER PUMPKIN EATER

IF YOU ARE NOT IN BED AT THE TIME YOU ARE TOLD, A GIGANTIC
PUMPKIN HEAD WILL COME IN YOUR ROOM AND EAT YOU

Submitter comment: I USED TO TELL MY SISTER THIS WHEN I BABYSAT AND SHE
WOULDN'T GO TO BED. YOU CAN IMPROVE ON IT BY ADDING SCARY
SOUNDS AND GESTURES. I'M NOT SURE WHERE I LEARNED IT, BUT SINCE
THEN WE TELL IT TO CHILDREN WE BABYSIT FOR.

Where learned: HOME

James Callow Keyword(s): CARNIVEROUS PLANT ; FUNCTION: TO SCARE CHILD INTO GOING TO

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Supernatural Being
BELIEF -- Plant

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TOOTHACHE CURE

IN KENTUCKY, ONE TOUCHES AN ELDER TREE WITH THE HAND OF THAT
SIDE WHERE THE AILIMG TOOTH IS LOCATED, AND SAYS THREE TIMES:
MY TEETH ARE ACHING,
A BLACK ONE, A WHITE, A RED ONE,
I WISH THEY WOULD BLEED TO DEATH,
IN THE NAME OF GOD THE FATHER.

Submitter comment: THIS TOOTHACE CURE WAS TOLD TO ME BY A FORMER NEIGHBOR WHO WAS A
NATIVE OF VIRGINIA AND OF GERMAN BACKGROUND. SHE HAS SINCE
MOVED BACK TO THE SOUTH.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): TRANSFER

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Plant
BELIEF -- Prayer
BELIEF -- Color
BELIEF -- Method of Curing

Date learned: 00001930S

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