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James Callow Folklore Archive

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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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FOR GOOD LUCK A BABY SHOULD BE GIVEN THE FIRST NAME SPOKEN IN
ITS PRESENCE AFTER ITS BIRTH.

Submitter comment: A NEGRO MAID WHO WORKED FOR ME CALLED HER LITTLE SON

Where learned: GEORGIA ; CLEVELAND

Subject headings: 686 Properties attributed to specific numbers or numerals individually.
BELIEF -- Birth
BELIEF -- Baptism Naming rite

Date learned: 07-24-1968

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JUMP ROPE RHYME

DONALD DUCK IS A ONE LEGGED DUCK. DONALD DUCK IS A TWO LEGGED
DUCK. DONALD DUCK IS A THREE LEGGED DUCK.
DONALD DUCK IS A FOUR LEGGED DUCK.
DONALD DUCK IS A PIGEON TOED DUCK.
DONALD DUCK IS A BOW LEGGED DUCK, DONALD DUCK IS A ONE LEGGED,
TWO LEGGED, THREE LEGGED, FOUR LEGGED, PIGEON TOED BOW
LEGGED DUCK.

Where learned: GEORGIA ; SAVANNAH

James Callow Keyword(s): CUMULATIVE COUNTING CHAIN

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

Date learned: 06-03-1970

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JUMP ROPE RHYME

CINDERELLA DRESSED IN MUSTARD, WENT DOWNTOWN TO GET SOME CUSTARD.
ON THE WAY HER GIRDLE BUSTED. HOW MANY PEOPLE WERE DISGUSTED? 1, 2,
3, 4, 5, (WHATEVER NUMBER ) (THE ROPE TURNS FASTER.)

Where learned: GEORGIA ; SAVANNAH

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

Date learned: 11-30-1972

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ALWAYS GO OUT OF A HOUSE BY THE SAME DOOR YOU ENTER IT.

Where learned: GEORGIA ; CLEVELAND

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Bad luck Leaving Entering Returning home Travel

Date learned: 07-24-1968

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BAD LUCK IF A BLACK CAT CROSSES ONE'S PATH.

Where learned: GEORGIA ; CLEVELAND

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Mammal
BELIEF -- Magic of Speech, Sign, Color
BELIEF -- Bad luck Animals

Date learned: 07-24-1968

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WHEN THERE IS ILLNESS IN THE HOME, IT IS VERY BAD LUCK TO HEAR
AN OWL HOOT.

Where learned: GEORGIA ; CLEVELAND

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Bird
BELIEF -- Bad luck Animals

Date learned: 07-24-1968

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From others we can hide some things
We've thought and said and done;
We cannot hide them from the lord
He known them, everyone.

Where learned: GEORGIA ; Alberton

Keyword(s): poem

James Callow Keyword(s): knows

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

Date learned: 00-00-1959

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NEVER WALK UNDER AN UMBRELLA IN THE HOUSE.

Where learned: GEORGIA ; CLEVELAND

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Bad luck Umbrella

Date learned: 07-24-1968

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Childern (Children's) Game (River Rat)
Lay a small rug in the middle of the room for a river. Or draw two
chalk lines on the floor to mark the sides of the river. Choose
one person to be the watcher. Have everyone line up on one side of
the river. Start the music and have everyone march across the
river. Stop the music. Anyone standing in the river is the river
rat. He steps out of the line and watches for other river rats who
get caught in the river. Boys and girls can play this game,
preferably ages 5 to 10.

Where learned: GEORGIA ; Alberton

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Singing Dancing Marching

Date learned: 00-00-1959

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BAD LUCK TO SPILL SALT, BUT TO BREAK THE SPELL, THROW A
LITTLE OVER YOUR LEFT SHOULDER WITH YOUR RIGHT HAND.

Where learned: GEORGIA ; CLEVELAND

James Callow Keyword(s): POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: Food Drink -- Flavoring
BELIEF -- Mineral
BELIEF -- Bad luck Food and drink
BELIEF -- Conversions Food and drink

Date learned: 07-24-1968

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BAD LUCK TO WALK UNDER A LADDER.

Where learned: GEORGIA ; CLEVELAND

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Bad luck Ladder (angles, pyramid, etc.)

Date learned: 07-24-1968

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SEE A PIN AND PICK IT UP,
ALL THAT DAY YOU WILL HAVE GOOD LUCK.
SEE A PIN AND LET IT LAY,
YOU WILL HAVE BAD LUCK ALL THE DAY.

Where learned: GEORGIA ; CLEVELAND

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Belief
BELIEF -- Good luck Sharp objects
BELIEF -- Bad luck Sharp objects

Date learned: 07-24-1968

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SUPERSTITION

NEVER MARRY A POOR GIRL, SHE WILL PUT HER HAND TOO DEEP IN
THE LARD GOURD.

Submitter comment: THIS WAS COINED WHEN GOURDS WERE USED FOR KITCHEN UTENSILS.

Where learned: GEORGIA ; CLEVELAND

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Custom

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MILITARY EXCLAMATION

AMONG MILITARY PARACHUTISTS, IT IS SAID THAT "GERONIMO"
BECAME A TRADITIONAL SHOUTED EXCLAMATION DURING THE EARLY
YEARS OF AIRBORNE TRAINING. IN 1940, THE SAFETY OF
PARACHUTING, AS WELL AS THE SANITY OF THOSE PARTICIPATING,
WAS IN DOUBT. AN UNKNOWN YOUNG VOLUNTEER IS SAID TO HAVE
SHOUTED "GERONIMO" UPON JUMPING FROM AN AIRCRAFT, IN ORDER
TO PROVE TO HIMSELF, AND ANYONE WHO WOULD BELIEVE HIM,
THAT ONE COULD JUMP FROM AN AIRCRAFT IN FLIGHT AND NOT
BE INSANE. THE ASSUMPTION WAS THAT IF ONE COULD RECALL
A NON-SEQUITUR SUCH AS "GERONIMO", ONE'S REASONING
CAPABILITIES MUST BE INTACT. HOWEVER, NO ONE HAS EXPLAINED
WHY A MAN, WHO HAS JUST SHOUTED "GERONIMO" IN MID-AIR,
SHOULD BE CONSIDERED SANE.

Submitter comment: THERE WERE ONLY 48 MEN IN THE FIRST AIRBORNE CLASS IN 1940.
THREE 250-FOOT TOWERS, FROM WHICH PARACHUTISTS COULD BE
DROPPED, AND WHICH HAD FORMERLY BEEN USED AT THE NEW YORK
WORLD'S FAIR, WERE PURCHASED AND ASSEMBLED AT FORT BENNING,
GEORGIA AS TRAINING AIDS. THE VOLUNTEER RATE BECAME VERY
HIGH AFTER THE INITIAL SUCCESSFUL JUMPS. IN FACT, MORE THAN
1000 MEN WERE WILLING TO ACCEPT A DEMOTION IN RANK IN ORDER
TO BECOME MEMBERS OF THIS NEW KIND OF UNIT.

Where learned: GEORGIA ; FORT BENNING

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Folk etymology
SPEECH -- Vocabulary of Special Group
SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 08-00-1981

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EXPLANATION OF WHY SMOKE FROM A FIRE OR ANY SOURCE WILL FOLLOW
SOMEONE NO MATTER WHERE THEY MOVE TO. THE EXPLANATION BEING
THAT SMOKE FOLLOWS AN UGLY PERSON.
EXPLANATION OF WHY SMOKE FROM A FIRE OF ANY SOURCE WILL FOLLOW
SOMEONE NO MATTER WHERE THEY MOVE TO. 'BEAUTY DRAWS SMOKE.'

Submitter comment:

THERE IS NO INFORMANT CARD FOR THIS INFORMANT.
BUT I THINK THIS IS AN EXCELLENT CONTRAST BETWEEN THIS ITEM
AND ANOTHER ONE I AM SUBMITTING BECAUSE THEY ARE EXACT OPPOSITES
SEE MARSHAL, MABLE FOR THE OTHER ONE.

Where learned: GEORGIA

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Fire
BELIEF -- Magic of Speech, Sign, Color

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Cold Tonic (Recipe)

Her grandmother used to give this tea for medicinal purposes.
Boil pine top needles about 30 minutes until it turned brown.
Drink a full cup before going to bed and it will cure your
cold.

Where learned: GEORGIA ; Greenville

Subject headings: 686 Properties attributed to specific numbers or numerals individually.

Date learned: 00-00-1916

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Smoke follows an ugly person.

Submitter comment:

INFORMANT'S EXPLANATION OF WHY SMOKE FROM A FIRE OR ANY SOURCE WILL FOLLOW SOMEONE NO MATTER WHERE THEY MOVE TO.

THERE IS NO INFORMANT CARD FOR THIS INFORMANT,  BUT I THINK THIS IS AN EXCELLENT CONTRAST BETWEEN THIS ITEM AND ANOTHER ONE I'M SUBMITTING BECAUSE THEY'RE EXACT OPPOSITES. SEE MARSHAL, MABLE FOR THE OTHER ONE.

Data entry tech comment:

Collector notes that informant is an elderly African American woman from Georgia who learned this around 1920 or earlier.


 

Where learned: GEORGIA

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Fire
BELIEF -- Magic of Speech, Sign, Color

Date learned: 00001920S OR EARLIER

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IF THE HAG RIDES YOU AT NIGHT THE BEST WAY TO GET RID OF HER
IS TO PUT A SMOKE-FILLED JAR UNDER YOUR BED,AND SHE WILL BE
TRAPPED IN THE JAR.YOU WILL KNOW BECAUSE,THE SMOKE IN THE JAR WILL
TURN BLACK.

Where learned: GEORGIA

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Witch Shaman

Date learned: 04091984CA

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PROVERBIAL COMPARISON

THAT SKIRT IS SO SHORT, IT WOULDN'T FLAG A TRAIN IF IT
WERE RED.

Submitter comment: HEARD BY INFORMANT FROM LONG TIME RESIDENT OF ROCKMART,
GEORGIA, JAMES TRIBLE.

Where learned: GEORGIA ; TENNESSEE ; NASHVILLE ; ROCKMART

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Metaphor
PROVERB -- Proverbial Comparison

Date learned: 06-12-1972

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