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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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WHEN YOUR HAIR HAS TURNED TO SILVER,
AND LIFE'S PATH NO MORE YOU TROD.
MAY YOUR NAME IN GOLD BE WRITTEN,
IN THE AUTOGRAPH BOOK OF GOD.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; WARREN

James Callow Keyword(s): DEATH SALVATION NAME MAGIC RHYME: ABCB

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Autograph Verse

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IF SOMEONE LEAVES A DIAPER BEHIND AT YOUR HOUSE,
YOU SOON WILL BECOME PREGNANT.

Where learned: OHIO ; NORTH OLMSTED

James Callow Keyword(s): CONTAGIOUS MAGIC

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

Date learned: 03-08-1970

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REVERSING A BABY'S SLEEP CYCLE

IF YOU WANT TO REVERSE A BABY'S SLEEP CYCLE YOU TURN IT HEAD OVER
HEELS AND THE SLEEP CYCLE WILL REVERSE.

Submitter comment: SAID HE DIDN'T REALLY BELIEVE IT.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

James Callow Keyword(s): DIRECTION POSITION ; HOMEOPATHIC MAGIC

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Remedy

Date learned: 10-00-1973

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NUMBERS

A SEVENTH SON OF A SEVENTH SON HAS SPECIAL POWERS.

James Callow comment: P820 AND P720 ARE MY ADDITIONS--J. T. CALLOW
CN[ MERCIER, CYNTHIA 731458
C1[ 9333 STROLEITZ
C2[ NEW ORLEANS, LOUISANA
DNC[ 1,526
******************** C FILE 1 ********************

Where learned: LOUISIANA ; UNICE

James Callow Keyword(s): MAGICIAN PROPHET HEALER

Subject headings: 686 Seven / Sevenths / Several

Date learned: CA11001973

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BURN OLD HAIR

ALWAYS BURN YOUR HAIR THAT IS LEFT IN THE COMB OR BRUSH BECAUSE IF
A BIRD MAKES HIS NEST WITH YOUR HAIR, YOU WILL ALWAYS HAVE A HEADACHE

Where learned: LOUISIANA ; New Orleans

James Callow Keyword(s): CONTAGIOUS MAGIC

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Body part Senses Hair, on head, mustache, widow's peak
BELIEF -- Bird
BELIEF -- Means of Causing or Avoiding Illness

Date learned: CA11001973

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LUCKY CROSSING

IF YOU LIFT YOUR FEET OFF THE FLOOR OF YOUR CAR WHILE CROSSING A
BRIDGE OVER WATER YOU WILL ALWAYS REACH THE OTHER SIDE SAFELY.

Submitter comment: THIS WAS A MORE COMMON BELIEF IN THE EARLY 1900S WHEN PEOPLE WERE A
LITTLE MORE WARY ABOUT DRIVING CARS OVER BRIDGES.

Where learned: PENNSYLVANIA ; SAINT CLAIR

James Callow Keyword(s): AUTOMOBILE ; MAGIC

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Product or activity of man or animal
BELIEF -- Body part Senses Feet, toes, toenails
BELIEF -- Street Trip Relations between relatives, friends, host and guest Social class Rank
SPEECH -- Gesture

Date learned: 00001960S

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NEW YEAR'S SAYING

IN IRELAND NEW YEAR'S SAYING "EAT PORK AND LIVE OFF THE FAT OF THE
LAND - EAT CHICKEN AND SCRATCH THE REST OF THE YEAR

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT ; TOLD IN

James Callow Keyword(s): HOMEOPATHIC MAGIC

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 1 New Year's
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Measure of time Year
Food Drink -- Typical menus for the various meals For meal hours, see F574.84. Special or festive meals

Date learned: 11-30-1972

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IF A PERSON GETS A PIECE OF A PERSON'S HAIR & COOKS IT IN THEIR
FOOD; THEY'LL BE UNDER YOUR POWER.

Submitter comment: THIS FRIEND OF MINE SAID, THIS IS WHY HER HUSBAND IS SO IN LOVE WITH
HER.

Where learned: DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): CONTAGIOUS MAGIC

Subject headings: Charm / Enchantment / Conjuration
Favorites
BELIEF -- Body part Senses

Date learned: 12-00-1972

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NEVER STEP OVER A BABY, IF YOU DO IT WILL NOT GROW, AT ALL.

Where learned: MICHIGAN

James Callow Keyword(s): HOMEOPATHIC MAGIC

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

Date learned: 10-05-1972

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WHEN A PERSON HAS TRENCH MOUTH CALL THE PREACHER. HE BLOWS INTO
THE PERSON'S MOUTH AND THE TRENCH MOUTH IS CURED.

Where learned: MICHIGAN

James Callow Keyword(s): CONTAGIOUS MAGIC ; VINCENT'S ANGINA

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Curer

Date learned: 10-05-1972

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PLANT BEANS DURING THE FULL MOON, THAT WAY YOU WILL HAVE BEANS
THAT ARE FULL.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; JACKSON

James Callow Keyword(s): HOMEOPATHIC MAGIC

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- F476
BELIEF -- Moon

Date learned: 11-02-1972

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NEW YEAR'S CUSTOM

GRANDMOTHER SAID WHEN NEW YEAR'S WOULD COME AROUND SHE HAD THE
TRADITIONAL BLACK-EYED PEAS AND COLLARD GREENS TO COMPLETE HER NEW
YEAR'S DINNER. GRANDMOTHER SAID THE TRADITIONAL DINNER REPRESENTED
GOOD FINANCIAL LUCK THROUGHOUT THE YEAR. THE BLACK-EYED PEAS
SYMBOLIZED COINS AND THE COLLARDS REPRESENTED GREENBACKS.

Submitter comment:

INFORMANT
PRACTICED THIS CUSTOM SINCE THE EARLY YEARS OF HER MARRIAGE.

Where learned: SOUTH CAROLINA

James Callow Keyword(s): HOMEOPATHIC MAGIC MONEY ; SYMBOLS

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 1 New Year's
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20
Food Drink -- Typical menus for the various meals For meal hours, see F574.84. Special or festive meals
BELIEF -- Color
BELIEF -- Good luck P881.42

Date learned: 00001960S (MID)

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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

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SPIRIT IN HER SHOES

THEODORA HAYNES WAS MARYLOU'S ROOMMATE AT WESTERN MICHIGAN
UNIVERSITY
BEFORE GOING TO BED, SHE WOULD PLACE HER SHOES UNDER THE BED SO
NO SPIRIT COULD COME DURING THE NIGHT TO COMMAND HER SOUL,
HER. {SIC} /THEODORA WAS 18, A BLACK-AMERICAN AND SINGLE

Where learned: UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): MAGICAL OBJECT AMULET ; NEGRO

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Devil Demon
BELIEF -- Magic of Speech, Sign, Color

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QUARTZ CRYSTALS

IF YOU PUT QUARTZ CRYSTALS OVER YOUR DOOR BY TAPING
THEM THERE. YOU WARD OFF EVIL SPIRITS AND HARM. THE REASON
BEING THAT SINCE QUARTZ IS MULTI-FACED, IT WILL REFLECT AWAY EVIL
SPIRITS. BRUCE'S INFORMANT WAS HIS MOTHER ORETHA OF CREOLE DESCENT

Where learned: UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): MAGICAL OBJECT

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

Date learned: 12-08-1972

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WHEN YOUR HAIR HAS TURNED TO SILVER,
AND LIFE'S PATH NO MORE YOU TROD.
MAY YOUR NAME IN GOLD BE WRITTEN,
IN THE AUTOGRAPH BOOK OF GOD.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; WARREN

James Callow Keyword(s): DEATH SALVATION NAME MAGIC ; RHYME: ABCB

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Autograph Verse

Date learned: 10-24-1972

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BURN YOUR HAIR OR BIRDS WILL BUILD NEST WITH IT CAUSING YOUR HEAD TO
ACHE. THIS IS PRACTICED BY MANY SOUTHERNERS.

Submitter comment: INFORMANT MEANS THIS TO BE HAIRS THAT YOU LOST THROUGH COMBING OR
BRUSHING.

Where learned: DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): CONTAGIOUS MAGIC ; HEADACHE

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

Date learned: 09-08-1972

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HICCUP CURE

IF A BABY HAS HICCUPS, TO CURE THEM THE PARENTS TAKE A HORSE
COLLAR AND ONE PARENT STANDS ON EACH SIDE OF THE COLLAR. THEN
THEY PASS THE CHILD THROUGH THE THE COLLAR NINE TIMES.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): MAGIC RING OR CIRCLE

Subject headings: 686 Ninths / Nine
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Circle and other round forms
BELIEF -- Method of Curing

Date learned: 10-00-1974

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WARTS

TO GET RID OF WARTS, TIE A HORSE HAIR AROUND IT. THEN THE WARTS
WILL FALL OFF.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): MAGIC CIRCLE? TRANSFER?

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Mammal
BELIEF -- Animal

Date learned: 10-00-1974

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IF YOU GET A SPLINTER IN YOUR HAND YOU TAKE IT OUT AND PUT IT IN
YOUR HAIR TO KEEP IT FROM GETTING IT IN YOUR HAND AGAIN.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): MAGICAL CONTROL

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

Date learned: 10-00-1974

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