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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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In New Guinea, it is customary to take young boys away from
their parents for a couple of days to be initiated into
manhood. Ashes are used to cover the young boy's face and body
and a fire dance and prayer are conducted. The ashes
represent the death of the young boy. The young men are now
returned back to their parents.

Submitter comment: Robert spoke of this custom when he got back from Africa.
His gestures were mostly hands describing the way the
natives were conducting the ceremony.

Where learned: Africa

Keyword(s): Trial, Growing-up.

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Initiation rite Hazing

Date learned: 00-00-1949

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IF SOMEONE ASKS FOR YOUR HANDERCHIEF, MAKE SURE
YOU GET IT BACK OR YOU WILL HAVE BAD LUCK.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; BLOOMFIELD HILLS

James Callow Keyword(s): BORROW

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

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WHEN A PERSON DIED ON A FEATHER MATTRESS, THERE WOULD BE A CROWN
OF FEATHERS INSIDE THE MATTRESS IF THAT PERSON WENT TO HEAVEN.

Where learned: TENNESSEE ; BRENTWOOD

James Callow Keyword(s): ANGEL CROWN

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial
BELIEF -- Bad luck P882.2

Date learned: 07-05-1973

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THIS IS A STORY ABOUT A WATER-SKIER WHO FELL WHILE SKIING
AND BECAME TANGLED IN THE SEAWEED. BY THE TIME THE BOAT
HAD TURNED AROUND AND REACHED THE SKIER, THE PERSON HAD
ALREADY DROWNED.
I HEARD THIS WHEN I WAS LITTLE AND DO NOT KNOW IF IT IS
TRUE OR NOT. I THINK IT SERVES AS A WARNING TO WATER-
SKIERS TO WATCH OUT FOR SEAWEEK. BEING A WATER-SKIER,
I KNOW THAT IT IS EASY TO BECOME TANGLED IN SEAWEED, BUT
IT IS EASY TO PULL IT OUT IF ONE IS BADLY TANGLED,
DROWNING WOULD NOT BE THAT EASY. BUT KNOWING THE STORY
EVERYTIME I HAVE FALLEN IN SEAWEED, IT SENDS CHILLS
THROUGH ME.

Where learned: HARPER WOODS ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

Keyword(s): ACCIDENTAL DROWNING

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Human Being

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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SHOOTING A HAT

I WAS HUNTING IN THE LOWER PENINSULA OF MICHIGAN WITH A GROUP OF
FOUR OTHER MEN. WE LINED UP FIFTY YARDS FROM EACH OTHER AND
WALKED DUE NORTH. WE SAW A RUSTLING IN THE LEAVES. I WENT UP
TO THE SPOT AND SHOT, AND THEN A HAT CAME FLYING OUT OF THE
LEAVES. I'D HIT ONE OF MY COMPANIONS WHO HAD STRAYED OFF. SO
NOW I REFUSE TO HUNT IN THE LOWER PENINSULA, BECAUSE THERE ARE
TOO MANY HUNTERS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT HIGH SCHOOL ; HISTORY

Keyword(s): CROWDED CONDITIONS

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Product or activity of man or animal

Date learned: 09-00-1968

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THIS IS A STORY ABOUT A WATER-SKIER WHO FELL WHILE SKIING
AND BECAME TANGLED IN THE SEAWEED. BY THE TIME THE BOAT
HAD TURNED AROUND AND REACHED THE SKIER, THE PERSON HAD
ALREADY DROWNED.
I HEARD THIS WHEN I WAS LITTLE AND DO NOT KNOW IF IT IS
TRUE OR NOT. I THINK IT SERVES AS A WARNING TO WATER-
SKIERS TO WATCH OUT FOR SEAWEEK. BEING A WATER-SKIER,
I KNOW THAT IT IS EASY TO BECOME TANGLED IN SEAWEED, BUT
IT IS EASY TO PULL IT OUT IF ONE IS BADLY TANGLED,
DROWNING WOULD NOT BE THAT EASY. BUT KNOWING THE STORY
EVERYTIME I HAVE FALLEN IN SEAWEED, IT SENDS CHILLS
THROUGH ME.

Where learned: HARPER WOODS ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

Keyword(s): ACCIDENTAL DROWNING

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Human Being

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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SHOOTING A HAT

I WAS HUNTING IN THE LOWER PENINSULA OF MICHIGAN WITH A GROUP OF
FOUR OTHER MEN. WE LINED UP FIFTY YARDS FROM EACH OTHER AND
WALKED DUE NORTH. WE SAW A RUSTLING IN THE LEAVES. I WENT UP
TO THE SPOT AND SHOT, AND THEN A HAT CAME FLYING OUT OF THE
LEAVES. I'D HIT ONE OF MY COMPANIONS WHO HAD STRAYED OFF. SO
NOW I REFUSE TO HUNT IN THE LOWER PENINSULA, BECAUSE THERE ARE
TOO MANY HUNTERS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT HIGH SCHOOL ; HISTORY

Keyword(s): CROWDED CONDITIONS

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Product or activity of man or animal

Date learned: 09-00-1968

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HARD ROE TO HOE

IT'S A HARD ROE TO HOE.

Keyword(s): GARDENING

James Callow Keyword(s): ROW

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Phrase

Date learned: 00001930S

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A MOTHER'S PRAYER WILL SAVE SOULS FROM THE DEEP.

Where learned: RUSSIA ; MOSCOW

James Callow Keyword(s): DROWNING ; MOTHER ; PRAYING

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Metaphor
PROVERB -- Proverbial Apothegm Maxim

Date learned: 00001905-1910

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Superstition

Always cross your fingers when passing a black crow.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Original BN [P880] crossed out and replaced with current classifications.

The question For Good Luck? is written underneath the submission.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): ANIMAL ; BIRD ; COLOR ; Crow ; OMEN ; SUPERSTITION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Bird
BELIEF -- Color
SPEECH -- Gesture

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Superstition: Animals

There is a legendary snake with a crown on its head and the crown had bells on it. The snake has a beard like a nanny goat. It is a huge and fearsome snake. It is said to come out once a year on a holy day and few have seen it.

Submitter comment:

My father's dad claims to have seen it. He saw the ground shaking all around a house and he saw the head of this snake come out of the ground. He claims that 10 to 15 feet of ground was shaking.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: HOME ; MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): BELIEF ; Crown ; Fearful ; Holy ; Legend ; MYTH ; Serpent ; Snake ; SUPERSTITION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Animal
BELIEF -- Mammal

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Entry filtered.

Belief: Animal

Historical record from James Callow Folklore Archive.

Belief in Oysters:

Oysters make a man sexually potent.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Original BN [P500, N245.8] crossed out. Replaced with current classifications

Where learned: HOME ; MICHIGAN ; GROSSE POINTE

Keyword(s): ANIMAL ; APHRODISIAC ; BELIEF ; Male ; Oysters ; Potent ; Prowess ; SEX ; Sexuality ; SHELLFISH ; SUPERSTITION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Animal
Filter - Mature Content

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Proverb

One today is worth two tomorrows.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Located in pile marked Duplicates and Other Rejects

Where learned: HOME

Keyword(s): NUMBERS ; One ; Today ; TOMORROW ; Two

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Apothegm Maxim

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Proverb

Don't put off until tomorrow what you can do today.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Original BN [V600] crossed out. Replaced with current classification.

Keyword(s): Aphorism ; Apothegm ; Maxim ; Procrastinate ; PROCRASTINATION ; PROVERB ; Today ; TOMORROW ; VERSE

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Apothegm Maxim

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Proverb

A whistling wife and a crowing hen never come to a good end.

Submitter comment:

Learned from youth.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: INDIANA ; Hudson Lake

Keyword(s): Aphorism ; Apothegm ; Crowing ; FATE ; Hen ; Maxim ; PROVERB ; VERSE ; Whistle ; Wife

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Proverb
PROVERB -- Blason Populaire

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Proverb

Wedding Proverb:

On your wedding day, you should wear something new, something old, and something borrowed.

Submitter comment:

Mrs. Malony learned this when she was a child. She did not know the verse form of the tradition and left out the rhyming "blue."

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

BN chosen because submission card was located in pile - all cards in pile were marked V300

James Callow comment:

Original BN [c880] crossed out. Not replaced wtih any classification.

Keyword(s): Aphorism ; Apothegm ; BORROW ; Maxim ; New ; Old ; PROVERB ; SUPERSTITION ; VERSE ; WEDDING

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Apothegm Maxim

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Proverb

Whistling women and crowing hens are bound to come to some bad end.

Submitter comment:

From - Uncertain

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; GROSSE POINTE

Keyword(s): Aphorism ; Apothegm ; Crow ; FATE ; Hen ; Maxim ; PROVERB ; RHYME ; VERSE ; Whistle ; WOMEN

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

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Proverb

A whistling girl and a crowing hen, both come to a bad end.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Original BN [V300, C880.300] crossed out. Replaced with current classifications.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): Aphorism ; Apothegm ; Crow ; FATE ; Girl ; Hen ; Maxim ; PROVERB ; RHYME ; VERSE ; Whistle

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

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Proverb

Whistling girls and cackling hens always come to a bad end.

Submitter comment:

I heard this as a child in Ferndale, MI

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Original Bn [C880.400] crossed out. Replacedw tih current classification.

Keyword(s): Aphorism ; Apothegm ; Cackle ; Crow ; FATE ; Girl ; Hen ; Maxim ; PROVERB ; RHYME ; VERSE ; Whistle

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

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Proverb

Whistling girls and crowing hens are sure to come to some bad end.

Submitter comment:

She heard this from her mother.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): Aphorism ; Apothegm ; Crow ; Girl ; Hen ; Maxim ; PROVERB ; RHYME ; VERSE ; Whistle

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

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