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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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A LEGENDARY GAME

THERE WAS A PLAGUE IN ENGLAND AND THE GAME "RING AROUND THE ROSEY"
WAS REALLY A RASH WITH A RING AROUND IT, SO IT'S RING AROUND THE
ROSEY. IT USED TO SMELL, SO THEY KEPT POSIES IN THEIR POCKETS,
POCKET FULL OF POSIES. IT ALSO USED TO MAKE THEM SNEEZE, AND AFTER
THEY SNEEZED THEY WOULD FALL DEAD, SO IT ISN'T REALLY ASHES, ASHES,
THEY ALL FALL DOWN, BUT ACHOO, ACHOO, THEY ALL FALL DEAD.

Submitter comment: INFORMANT LEARNED THIS FROM HER HIGH SCHOOL TEACHER.

Where learned: DETROIT ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Explanation of a name
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Game Pastime
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- School
BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial
BELIEF -- Medicine

Date learned: 03-31-1967

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OCCUPATIONAL JOKE

SURGEONS ARE SO EAGER TO DO ORGAN TRANSPLANTS THESE DAYS THAT BED PATIENTS WHO WANT TO TAKE NAPS FIRST PERCH A SIGN ON THEIR BELLIES SAYING, "I AM ONLY SLEEPING." THIS IS TO DISCOURAGE SURGEONS WHO ARE SAID TO PROWL
AROUND HOSPITAL WARDS AND SNATCH AWAY PATIENTS
WITH THEIR EYES CLOSED--BELIEVING THEM TO HAVE DIED RECENTLY.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Lie Tall tale
BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial
BELIEF -- Medicine

Date learned: 03-22-1970

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IF SHINGLES MEET AROUND YOUR BODY, IT IS A SIGN OF
NEAR DEATH.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: Observation
BELIEF -- Body part Senses
BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial
BELIEF -- Medicine

Date learned: 09-00-1968

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PROVERBIAL APOTHEGAM MAXIM STATED DIRECTLY

FEED A COLD, STARVE A FEVER.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT ; NEW YORK ; ALBANY ; CAMPUS

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Medicine
PROVERB -- Proverbial Apothegm Maxim

Date learned: 10-00-1973

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TAPE OF MISCELLANOUS INFORMATION

GHOATS, MONETARY SYSTEM,(NIARA & KOBO) DISEASES, WALKING BAREFOOTED,
CARRYING THINGS ON YOUR HEAD, GHOSTS OF CHILDREN, SUPERSTITIONS:
NIGERIAN SUPERSTITION, THEIR ORIGIN, JUJU, MAKING MONEY
USING HEAD OF CHILD, BANSHEE IN IRELAND, NIGERIAN LIGHTENING,
OMENS, CHARMS, GAMES, (MOTHER MAY I?)
WATER DANGEROUS FOR SWIMMING, AMDG FOR LUCK, FESTIVALS

Where learned: NIGERIA ; SOME FROM IRELAND

Subject headings: Charm / Enchantment / Conjuration
Observation
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Bodily Activity
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- F040!
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Entertainment Diversion
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Measure of quality Monetary system Money Wealth
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Festival
ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- Means of transportation Human
BELIEF -- P000
BELIEF -- Supernatural Being
BELIEF -- Ghost Spirit Phantom Specter
BELIEF -- Witch Shaman
BELIEF -- Body part Senses
BELIEF -- Lightning Thunder
BELIEF -- Magic of Speech, Sign, Color
BELIEF -- Word Letter
BELIEF -- Medicine
BELIEF -- Means of Causing or Avoiding Illness

Date learned: OOOOI96OS

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TO CURE A BACKACHE KEEP YOUR HANDS IN YOUR POCKETS.

Where learned: DETROIT ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Medicine

Date learned: 10-28-1967

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CRANBERRY CURE

CRANBERRY JUICE HAS OFTEN BEEN USED AS A CURE FOR BACK DISORDERS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Medicine
BELIEF -- Plant

Date learned: 09-10-1969

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IF YOU HAVE A BUMP ON YOUR HEAD, TAKE A RAZOR BLADE
DIPPED IN VINEGAR, RUB IT ON A KNIFE,
PRESS IT ON THE BUMP, AND THE BUMP WILL GO AWAY.

Data entry tech comment: THREE SIMILAR CASES ARE IN THIS SECTION OF THE ARCHIVES.

Where learned: NOT RECORDED BY COLLECTOR

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Medicine

Date learned: 00-00-1958

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WART CURE

IF YOU COUNT YOUR WARTS,
MAKE A KNOT IN A THREAD FOR EVERY WART,
THROW THE THREAD AWAY,
AND THE WARTS WILL BE CURED.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): MEASURING ; POWER OF NUMBERS ; SEVERAL SIMILAR COMMENTS IN THE ARCHIVES.

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Medicine
BELIEF -- Method of Curing

Date learned: 10-00-1969

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EARACHE

CURING AN EARACHE: PLACE THE CORE OF A WHITE ONION IN THE EAR WHERE
THE INFECTION IS. THIS WILL KILL THE ACHING.

Where learned: DETROIT

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Medicine
BELIEF -- Plant

Date learned: 09-18-1969

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HOLY WEEK

IF YOU GET A WOUND DURING THESE TIMES, IT WILL TAKE LONGER TO HEAL
BECAUSE IT IS NOT TIME TO ENJOY ONE SELF. SO ALL PLAYING SHOULD BE
AVOIDED.

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

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Spring Planting Holy Week
BELIEF -- Entertainment Diversion
BELIEF -- Medicine

Date learned: 05-00-1977

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EXPECTANT MOTHERS

TO HASTEN CHILDBIRTH, SEVERAL PEOPLE GATHER IN THE
MOTHER'S ROOM AND OPEN AND CLOSE THE BREECH OF A GUN.
THEY MAY EVEN SHOOT THE GUN OFF IN THE ROOM.

Submitter comment: LEARNED FROM HER MOTHER.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Birth
BELIEF -- Birth
BELIEF -- Medicine

Date learned: 04-10-1967

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IF YOU HAVE A WART, RUB IT WITH A POTATO. THEN BURY THE POTATO
AND THE WART WILL SLOWLY GO AWAY.

Submitter comment: INFORMANT TOLD ME TO DO THIS TO A WART THAT I HAD, AND I DID,
AND THE WART WENT AWAY IN TWELVE DAYS. THE FAMILY DOCTOR
COULDN'T EXPLAIN IT EITHER.

Where learned: FLORIDA ; LAUDERDALE-BY-THE-SEA

James Callow Keyword(s): TRANSFER PLUGGING

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Medicine
BELIEF -- Method of Curing

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TEST FOR THE MUMPS: TAKE A TEASPOON OF VINEGAR AND
IF IT BURNS ON THE WAY DOWN, YOU HAVE THEM. IF NOT,
YOU DON'T.

Where learned: HOME

James Callow Keyword(s): DIAGNOSIS

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Medicine

Date learned: 02-15-1970

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EVERY CHILD HAS WORMS. ADULTS ALSO HAVE FORMS OF
WORMS BUT THEIR SYSTEMS HAVE EITHER OVERTAKEN
OR BECOME IMMUNE TO THEM.

Submitter comment: INFORMANT LEARNED THIS FROM HER MOTHER WHEN SHE
LIVED ON A FARM AS A GIRL.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): DISEASE

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Medicine

Date learned: 03-31-1967

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BACKACHE CURE

DIP A STRING IN TURPENTINE AND TIE IT AROUND YOUR WAIST.

Where learned: WORK

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Medicine

Date learned: 08-12-1968

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IF A SICK PERSON ICHES, HE WILL GET BETTER VERY SOON.

Where learned: KENTUCKY ; HOPKINSVILLE

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Medicine
BELIEF -- Sensations and involuntary actions

Date learned: 04-01-1972

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BLOOD TONIC

MIX SULPHUR AND MOLASSES FOR BLOOD TONIC IN SPRING.

Where learned: TENNESSEE ; NASHVILLE

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Medicine

Date learned: 06-00-1972

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BLOOD

SULPHUR AND MOLASSES IS GOOD FOR THE BLOOD.

Where learned: HAMPSHIRE

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Medicine

Date learned: 07-25-1968

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CURE FOR COUGH

TWO CUPS OF WHISKEY, A CUP OF HONEY, AND TWO OUNCES OF PAREGORIC
BOILED TOGETHER MAKE AN EXCELLENT COUGH SYRUP.

Where learned: TENNESSEE ; LEWISBURG

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Medicine

Date learned: 06-17-1972

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