RE:SEARCH logo
University of Detroit Mercy Libraries / Instructional Design Studio
UDM HOME BLACKBOARD MY UDMERCY
RESEARCH HOME / FIND / SPECIAL COLLECTIONS / THE JAMES T. CALLOW FOLKLORE ARCHIVE /
James Callow Folklore Archive

Collection Home

About Dr. James T. Callow

Dr. James T. Callow publications

Collectors

Browse by

Subject heading

Keyword

Location

Questions or comments on this site? Please email davidsor@udmercy.edu.

The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

search for

Content filter is on

Your search for Foot returned 38 results.

prev | items 1 - 21 | next

STARTING THE NEW YEAR

ON THE FIRST OF THE NEW YEAR YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO LET THE FIRST
DARK PERSON THAT YOU KNOW COME THROUGH THE DOOR FIRST
WHILE HE CARRIES A PIECE OF BLACK CHARCOAL (IF NOT MALE THEN
HAVE A FEMALE DO IT).
SO THAT YOU MAY HAVE GOOD LUCK THROUGHOUT THE YEAR.

Submitter comment: THIS ITEM WAS LEARNED DURING HIS LATE ADOLESCENT STAGE IN HIS
HOME TOWN.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): FIRST FOOTING

Subject headings: 686 Properties attributed to specific numbers or numerals individually.
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 1 New Year's
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20
BELIEF -- Number
BELIEF -- Good luck P881.1
BELIEF -- Good luck P881.42

Date learned: 00001930S

View just this record

EVERY YEAR IN MASSILLON, OHIO, BEGINNING WITH THE FIRST FRIDAY
OF THE SCHOOL YEAR, AND CONTINUING FOR TEN WEEKS, THE FOOTBALL GAMES
OF THE CITY'S ONLY HIGH SCHOOL DOMINATE THE SOCIAL, ENTERTAINMENT
AND CONVERSATIONAL ASPECTS OF THE CITIZENS. THE SEASON TRADITION-
ALLY CLOSES WITH AN INTER-CITY RIVALRY WITH CANTON'S (MASSILLON'S
NEIGHBORING CITY--LESS THAN TEN MILES AWAY) LARGEST SCHOOL--MCKINLEY,
AND APPROPRIATELY, "BEAT MCKINLEY WEEK."
THE MASSILLON TIGER--MCKINLEY BULLDOG FESTIVITIES ARE NOT PAR-
TICIPATED IN JUST BY STUDENTS. PEOPLE OF ALL AGES GET EXCITED ABOUT
THE GAME. SOME OF THE MOST ARDENT SUPPORTERS ARE OLD-TIMERS WHO
LOOK FORWARD TO IT EVERY YEAR, AND MOST EVERY CHILD HAS SEEN ONE
TIGER GAME, AND PROBABLY SPORTS A TIGER JACKET, BY THE TIME HE ENTERS
FIRST GRADE.
EACH OF THE TEAM'S THREE BOOSTER CLUBS, THE TIGER BOOSTERS, THE
SIDELINERS (EACH OF WHOSE MEMBERS SPONSOR A FOOTBALL PLAYER) AND THE
BENCHWARMERS, HOLD A "BEAT MCKINLEY RALLY" SOMETIME DURING THE WEEK,
AND THE STUDENT BODY ITSELF ALSO HOLDS A FEW RALLIES DURING THE
COURSE OF THE WEEK.
ON FRIDAY NIGHT, THE BIGGEST PRE-GAME EVENT IS HELD. A PARADE
MARCHES THROUGH THE DOWNTOWN AREA. INCLUDED IS THE MASSILLON TIGER
SWING BAND, MAJORETTES, COACHES, PLAYERS, AND FLOATS (ALL BEARING
THE THEME"BEAT MCKINLEY.") "OBIE," THE MASCOT IN A TIGER SKIN
(AND SINCE 1970, A LIVE TIGER IN A CAGE ALSO) ARE THERE, AS WELL AS
THE TRADITIONAL CALLIOPE; PLAYED ONLY DURING BEAT MCKINLEY WEEK, IT
ALSO DRIVES AROUND THE CITY STREETS PLAYING FOR A FEW HOURS
EACH NIGHT. THE PARADE MARCHES TO THE STADIUM COMPLEX, WHERE A HUGE
BONFIRE IS HELD. (STARTING IN 1973, FIRE REGULATIONS REDUCED THE
SIZE OF THE FIRE. AT THE SAME TIME THE SITE WAS CHANGED TO A PLACE
CLOSER TO THE DOWNTOWN AREA. SEE SUPPLEMENTARY PICTURE, AND NOTE
ATTENDANCE.)
INDIVIDUAL CITIZENS ALSO DO A GREAT DEAL OF "CAMPAIGNING."
BESIDES THE TIGER JACKETS, RAINCOATS, RIBBONS, CUSHIONS, BUMPER
STICKERS, AND TIGER TAILS, SOME FAMILIES DECORATE THEIR HOMES WITH
BOTH MASS-PRODUCED AND HOME-MADE SIGNS, AS WELL AS OCCASIONAL THREE-
DIMENSIONAL EXHIBITS, SUCH AS A STUFFED BULLDOG WITH A NOOSE TIED
AROUND HIS NECK.
THE SITE OF THE GAME ALTERNATES YEARLY BETWEEN MASSILLON TIGER
STADIUM AND CANTON FAWCETT STADIUM, AND IS ALWAYS PLAYED ON A SATUR-
DAY AFTERNOON AT TWO O'CLOCK. (WHEREAS ALL THE OTHER GAMES ARE
PLAYED ON FRIDAY NIGHTS.) IT NEVER DRAWS LESS THAN A SELLOUT CROWD
OF OVER TWENTY THOUSAND, EVEN THOUGH IT IS ALWAYS BROADCAST LIVE ON
THE LOCAL TELEVISION STATION.
THE FANS COME AS MUCH AS TWO HOURS BEFORE THE START OF THE GAME,
BECAUSE OF THE TRAFFIC JAMS. BEFORE THE START OF THE GAME, THE LIVE
TIGER MEETS MCKINLEY'S LIVE BULLDOG, AS DO THEIR COSTUMED COUNTER-
PARTS. LARGE CRATES OF HELIUM-FILLED BALLOONS (ORANGE AND BLACK BY
MASSILLON, AND RED AND BLACK BY CANTON) ARE ALWAYS RELEASED. THE
MAJORETTES RECEIVE CARNATIONS, AND THE SENIOR BAND MEMBERS ARE GIVEN
A FAREWELL CEREMONY. DURING THE PAST FEW YEARS, AN AIRPLANE BEARING
A BANNER WITH THE "BEAT MCKINLEY" MESSAGE HAS FLOWN BACK AND FORTH
OVER THE STADIUM, ADDING ANOTHER TRADITION TO THE GAME. DURING
HALF-TIME, THE SWING BAND PLAYS "THE TIGER RAG," AND PERFORMS SOME
ROUTINES THEY HAVE DONE FOR DECADES.
THE NIGHT OF THE GAME IS ONE OF THE BIGGEST NIGHTS FOR CELEBRA-
TION IN STARK COUNTY. WIN OR LOSE, THE ADULTS AND TEENS ALL HAVE
THEIR RESPECTIVE GET-TOGETHERS. MANY CLUBS AND ORGANIZATIONS SPONSOR
DANCES, INDIVIDUAL HOMES HAVE PARTIES, AND IT IS VIRTUALLY IMPOSSIBLE
TO GET A RESTAURANT RESERVATION LESS THAN THREE TO FOUR WEEKS IN
ADVANCE OF THE GAME.
IN ADDITION TO CALLING ATTENTION TO THE EVENTS OF "BEAT MCKINLEY
WEEK," THE TOWN NEWSPAPER, THE EVENING INDEPENDENT, ALSO CARRIES OUT
CERTAIN TRADITIONS OF ITS OWN. ON THE DAY BEFORE THE BIG GAME, THE
INDEPENDENT SUPERIMPOSES THE WORDS "BEAT MCKINLEY" (IN BIG BLOCK
LETTERS PRINTED IN ORANGE) OVER THE FRONT-PAGE STORIES. ON NEARLY
EVERY OTHER PAGE (AND ESPECIALLY ON THE SPORT PAGE) THE COL-
UMNS OF THE PAPER ARE BORDERED WITH THE WORDS "BEAT MCKINLEY." ALSO,
THE PAST SCORES OF THE MASSILLON-CANTON GAME, FROM ITS ORIGIN IN
1894, ARE TRADITIONALLY PRINTED YEARLY. SOMETIME DURING THE COURSE
OF THE WEEK, PICTURES OF THE SENIORS PLAYING THEIR LAST GAME ARE
PRINTED.

Submitter comment: CANTON CELEBRATES "BEAT MASSILLON WEEK" IN MUCH THE SAME WAY AS
MASSILLON CELEBRATES "BEAT MCKINLEY WEEK." THERE IS ALWAYS A LITTLE
"RIBBING" (SOMETIMES FRIENDLY, SOMETIMES NOT) BETWEEN MASSILLONIANS
AND CANTONIANS. I MYSELF ATTENDED THE NEAREST CATHOLIC SCHOOL, WHICH
IS LOCATED BETWEEN CANTON AND MASSILLON. EVEN THERE, THOUGH WE HAD
FOOTBALL GAMES OF OUR OWN THE SAME WEEK, STUDENTS WOULD WEAR "BEAT
MASSILLON" AND "BEAT MCKINLEY" RIBBONS, DEPENDING ON THEIR ALLEGIANCE
AND IT WAS A SIMILAR SITUATION IN ALL THE SUBURBAN AND COUNTY
SCHOOLS.

Where learned: OHIO ; MASSILLON

James Callow Keyword(s): SPORTS FOOTBALL

Subject headings: Favorites
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Special Object or Implement
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Entertainment Diversion

Date learned: 11-00-1973

View just this record

NEW YEAR'S BELIEF

IF THE FIRST PERSON TO VISIT YOU ON NEW YEAR'S DAY IS FAIR-HAIRED THERE WILL BE MUCH TROUBLE FOR YOU THAT YEAR.

IF THE FIRST PERSON TO VISIT IS DARK-HAIRED THEN THERE WILL BE GOOD LUCK FOR THE YEAR.

Data entry tech comment:

Informant and collector share the same surname.

Where learned: OHIO ; CLEVELAND

James Callow Keyword(s): FIRST FOOTING

Subject headings: 686 686.1
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 1 New Year's
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20
BELIEF -- Body part Senses
BELIEF -- Measure of time Year
BELIEF -- Color
BELIEF -- Good luck P881.42
BELIEF -- Bad luck P882.42

Date learned: 09-10-1972

View just this record

THE FIRST PERSON TO ENTER A PERSON'S HOUSE ON MONDAY MORNING,
SHOULD BE A MALE OR OTHERWISE YOU'LL HAVE BAD LUCK THE REST OF THE
WEEK.

Where learned: DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): FIRST FOOTING ; SEXISM

Subject headings: 686 Properties attributed to specific numbers or numerals individually.
BELIEF -- Measure of time WeekDayHour
BELIEF -- Bad luck

Date learned: 12-00-1972

View just this record

NEW YEAR'S CUSTOM/LUCK

THE FIRST PERSON TO ENTER THE HOUSE ON NEW YEAR'S DAY MUST BE
HAPPY, HEALTHY AND PROSPEROUS, SO THAT THE FAMILY'S GOOD LUCK WILL BE
INSURED.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; FARMINGTON

James Callow Keyword(s): CONTAGIOUS MAGIC FIRST FOOTING

Subject headings: 686 686.1
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20
BELIEF -- Fate Destiny Luck Chance
BELIEF -- Good luck P881.2

Date learned: 09-24-1972

View just this record

VISITOR

IT IS A SIGN OF BAD LUCK IF YOUR FIRST VISITOR ON
NEW YEAR'S DAY IS A WOMAN.

Submitter comment: THIS WAS TOLD TO THE INFORMANT BY A CO}WORKER WHO IS A BLACK
GIRL OF THE MUSLIM FAITH.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): FIRST FOOTING ; SEXISM

Subject headings: 686 Properties attributed to specific numbers or numerals individually.
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 1 New Year's
BELIEF -- Bad luck P882.2

Date learned: 10-25-1972

View just this record

EASTER

IF THE FIRST PERSON WHO WALKS IN THE DOOR ON EASTER IS A MAN, IT'S
BAD LUCK; IF IT'S A WOMAN, IT'S GOOD LUCK.

Where learned: TELEPHONE ; TOLD BY

Keyword(s): FIRST FOOTING ; LUCK

Subject headings: 686 Properties attributed to specific numbers or numerals individually.
Favorites
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Spring Planting Easter Sunday
BELIEF -- Fate Destiny Luck Chance

Date learned: 03-07-1970

View just this record

POLISH EASTER

ON EASTER MORNING, THE FAMILY WOULD ALWAYS HOPE FOR ITS FIRST VISITOR
TO BE A VERY YOUNG PERSON OR A CHILD AS THAT WOULD DENOTE THAT GOOD
FORTUNE WOULD FOLLOW ALL YEAR.

Submitter comment: LEARNED IN POLAND

Where learned: STORE

Keyword(s): FIRST FOOTING ; LUCK

Subject headings: 686 Properties attributed to specific numbers or numerals individually.
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Spring Planting Easter Sunday
BELIEF -- Fate Destiny Luck Chance

Date learned: 09-27-1967

View just this record

CHRISTMAS BELIEF

IF A MAN DOES NOT ENTER THE HOUSE FIRST ON CHRISTMAS
MORNING, THE HOUSE WILL BE PLAGUED WITH SICKNESS AND BAD
LUCK DURING THE COMING YEAR. (THE STRONGER THE MAN THE
BETTER THE GOOD LUCK). THIS CUSTOM IS PRACTICED BY POLISH-AMERICANS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; TOLD AT COLLECTORS HOME ; SOUTHFIELD

Keyword(s): FIRST FOOTING ; SEXIST

Subject headings: 686 Properties attributed to specific numbers or numerals individually.
Favorites
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 25 Christmas Also see F642, below.
BELIEF -- Means of Causing or Avoiding Illness
BELIEF -- Good luck
BELIEF -- Bad luck

Date learned: 10-25-1970

View just this record

A BELIEF

ON NEW YEARS DAY THE FIRST PERSON THAT SHOULD ENTER YOUR HOUSE
IS A MAN (IF YOU ARE A WOMAN). IF A WOMAN ENTERS FIRST YOU WILL HAVE
BAD LUCK ALL YEAR.

Submitter comment: HIS MOTHER WILL NOT LET ANY WOMAN IN HER
HOUSE ON NEW YEARS DAY FIRST AND WILL GET
MAD IF A WOMAN SHOWS UP FIRST.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT ; COLLECTED AT HOME

Keyword(s): FIRST FOOTING ; SEXIST

Subject headings: 686 Properties attributed to specific numbers or numerals individually.
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 1 New Year's
BELIEF -- Measure of time Year
BELIEF -- Bad luck

Date learned: 10-10-1971

View just this record

FIRST FOOTERS

THE FIRST ONE TO STEP FOOT INTO A HOUSE AFTER MIDNIGHT ON
NEW YEARS DAY BRINGS GOOD LUCK FOR THE FAMILY THE REST OF THE YEAR.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): FIRST FOOTING

Subject headings: 686 Properties attributed to specific numbers or numerals individually.
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 1 New Year's
BELIEF -- Good luck

Date learned: 09-16-1969

View just this record

GOOD LUCK OMEN FOR THE NEW YEAR (COLLECTOR'S TITLE)

IF THE MAN OF THE HOUSE IS THE FIRST ONE TO WALK THROUGH THE DOOR
ON NEW YEAR'S DAY, THE YEAR WILL BE A GOOD ONE.

Keyword(s): FIRST FOOTING

Subject headings: 686 Properties attributed to specific numbers or numerals individually.
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 1 New Year's
BELIEF -- Fate Destiny Luck Chance

Date learned: 10-18-1969

View just this record

SCOTS SUPERSTITION (COLLECTOR'S TITLE) ; BAD LUCK: NEW YEARS (CLASSIFIERS TITLE)

NEVER LET A RED OR LIGHT HAIRED PERSON CROSS YOUR THRESHOLD ON
NEW YEAR'S DAY UNLESS THEY CARRY COAL WITH THEM OR YOU WILL HAVE
BAD LUCK.

Submitter comment: PAT HAND HEARD THIS FROM A NEIGHBOR OF SCOTS DESCENT.

Where learned: UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT

Keyword(s): FIRST FOOTING ; HAIR COLOR

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Color
BELIEF -- Bad luck P882.42

View just this record

NEW YEAR'S CUSTOM

THE FIRST PERSON WHO COMES OVER THE THRESHOLD OF
YOUR HOUSE SHOULD BE A MAN TO BRING GOOD LUCK
TO THE HOUSE-HOLD.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): FIRST FOOTING ; SEXISM

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 1 New Year's
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20
BELIEF -- Good luck P881.42

Date learned: 09-26-1971

View just this record

NEW YEAR'S CUSTOM (EUROPEAN)

IN ORDER TO ENSURE ONESELF FOR A GOOD YEAR, IT IS COMMON CUSTOM
IN EUROPE FOR THE HEAD OF A FAMILY TO APPOINT AN OUTSIDER (CLOSE
FRIEND) TO BE THE FIRST ONE TO PUT HIS FOOT IN THE HOUSE. IF
SOMEONE UN-APPOINTED CAME INTO THE HOUSE, THE NEW YEAR WOULD NOT
BE A GOOD ONE.

Where learned: MAILED FROM ENGLAND

Keyword(s): FIRST FOOTING

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 1 New Year's
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Fixed DateFor specific dates, use the following system: F640.0101
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20

Date learned: 03-25-1968

View just this record

NEW YEAR'S EVE

IF A STRANGER ENTERS YOUR HOUSE THROUGH THE
BACK DOOR ON NEW YEAR'S EVE YOU'LL HAVE BAD LUCK ALL YEAR.

Submitter comment:

NOT BELIEVED

Data entry tech comment:

Informant and collector share the same surname.

Where learned: LOCATION NOT RECORDED BY COLLECTOR

Keyword(s): DIRECTION ; FIRST FOOTING ; LOCATION ; POSITION

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 1 New Year's
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Fixed DateFor specific dates, use the following system: F640.0101
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20
BELIEF -- Street Trip Relations between relatives, friends, host and guest Social class Rank
BELIEF -- Measure of time Year
BELIEF -- Bad luck P882.42

Date learned: 00-00-1968

View just this record

NEW YEAR'S CUSTOM

IF YOU LAY A BROOM ACROSS THE DOOR-WAY,
THE FIRST PERSON TO PICK IT UP AND GIVE IT
TO YOU WILL BE AN ENEMY OF YOURS THAT YEAR.

Submitter comment:

LEARNED FROM GRANDMOTHER

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): FIRST FOOTING

Subject headings: 686 686.1
Favorites
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 1 New Year's
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Fixed DateFor specific dates, use the following system: F640.0101
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20
BELIEF -- Measure of time Year

Date learned: 12-06-1967

View just this record

BELIEF

IT WILL BE A HAPPY YEAR IF THE FIRST VISITOR ON CHRISTMAS EVE OR
CHRISTMAS DAY IS A MAN. IF A WOMAN IT WILL BE MARRED.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): FIRST FOOTING

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 24 Christmas Eve Predictions
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 24 Christmas Eve Predictions

Date learned: 11-22-1968

View just this record

CHRISTMAS SUPERSTITION

ON CHRISTMAS DAY, IF A MAN WALKS INTO YOUR HOUSE FIRST, YOU WILL
HAVE GOOD LUCK, BUT IF A WOMAN WALKS IN FIRST, YOU WILL HAVE BAD
LUCK.

Submitter comment: INFORMANT HEARD THIS FROM HER PARENTS (1920'S) WHO BELIEVED IT. SHE
MAY MENTION IT NOW, BUT DOES NOT BELIEVE IT.

Where learned: PENNSYLVANIA ; TOLD AT INFORMANTS HOME ; PITTSBURGH

Keyword(s): FIRST FOOTING

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 24 Christmas Eve Predictions

Date learned: 10-02-1971

View just this record

AVOIDING AN ILLNESS

PEOPLE WHO SOAK THEIR FEET IN SALT WATER NEVER GET ATHLETES FOOT.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; SOUTHFIELD

James Callow Keyword(s): ATHLETE'S FOOT

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

Date learned: 00-00-1975

View just this record

prev | items 1 - 21 | next

University of Detroit Mercy
4001 W. McNichols Detroit , MI , 48221-3038
This site is endorsed by the University of Detroit Mercy (UDM) and supports the views, values, and mission of UDM. The University of Detroit Mercy web site provides links to other web sites, both public and private, for informational purposes. The inclusion of these links on UDM's site does not imply endorsement by the University. Please contact the Instructional Design Studio for any questions regarding this web site.