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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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BLACK AMERICAN

FOR FLAT-CHESTED WOMEN. RUB
BAKING POWDER OVER THE BREASTS.
LEAVE ON OVERNIGHT AND THE BREASTS
WILL HAVE RISEN BY MORNING.

Submitter comment: PASSED TO A CLASSMATE BY HER GRAND-
MOTHER.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Subject headings: Favorites
BELIEF -- Remedy

Date learned: 00-00-1967

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BLACK AMERICAN

MARRIED IN WHITE, YOU HAVE CHOSEN RIGHT;
MARRIED IN RED, YOU'RE BETTER OFF DEAD;
MARRIED IN YELLOW, ASHAMED OF THE FELLOW;
MARRIED IN BLUE, YOUR LOVER IS TRUE;
MARRIED IN GREEN, ASHAMED TO BE SEEN;
MARRIED IN BLACK, YOU'LL RIDE IN A HACK;
MARRIED IN PINK, YOUR SPIRITS WILL SINK;
MARRIED IN BROWN, YOU'LL LIVE OUT OF TOWN;
MARRIED IN GREY, YOU'LL BE SAD EVERY DAY.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

James Callow Keyword(s): COLORS

Subject headings: 860 Belief
Observation
Favorites
BELIEF -- Marriage
BELIEF -- Color

Date learned: 09-15-1985

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BLACK AMERICAN

PLAIT YOUR HORSE:S MANE WITH CORN-
SHUCKS TO PREVENT WITCHES FROM
RIDING HIM. INFORMANT HEARD FROM
GRANDFATHER.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Keyword(s): WITCHES

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Witch Shaman
BELIEF -- Plant

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BLACK AMERICAN

IF BUTTER WILL NOT COME, DROP
A RED HOT HORSE SHOE IN THE
MILK TO KILL THE WITCHES; THEN
THE BUTTER WILL COME. INFOR-
MANT HEARD ON GRANDMOTHER'S FARM
WHEN A CHILD.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

James Callow Keyword(s): HORSESHOE ; IRON

Subject headings: Food Drink -- Animal product Butter
BELIEF -- Witch Shaman
BELIEF -- Mineral

Date learned: 09-15-1985

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BLACK-AMERICAN BELIEF

A NEGRO WITH A RABBIT FOOT, MOUNTED ON A
WHITE HORSE, IN THE DARK OF THE MOON
IN A CEMETARY, WILL BREAK A WITCH SPELL.
INFORMANT HEARD FROM GRANDFATHER, WHEN
A SMALL CHILD.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Keyword(s): WITCHES

Subject headings: Charm / Enchantment / Conjuration
BELIEF -- Witch Shaman
BELIEF -- Mammal
BELIEF -- Prayer
BELIEF -- Color

Date learned: 09-15-1985

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BLACK-AMERICAN BELIEF

IF IT THUNDERS ON A CERTAIN DAY IN
FEBRUARY, THERE WILL BE FROST ON
THAT SAME DAY IN MAY.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Keyword(s): WEATHER

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- May
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- FO20
BELIEF -- Lightning Thunder
BELIEF -- Cloud Fog Mist Rain Hail Ice Snow Frost Dew

Date learned: 00-00-1958

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BLACK AMERICAN

IF THERE IS ENOUGH RAIN ON EASTER SUNDAY
TO WET A POCKET HANKERCHIEF, THERE WILL
BE A GOOD CROP YEAR.
I USED TO HEAR MY GRANDMOTHER SAY THIS.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Spring Planting
BELIEF -- Cloud Fog Mist Rain Hail Ice Snow Frost Dew
BELIEF -- Plant
BELIEF -- Measure of time Year

Date learned: 00-00-1958

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BLACK AMERICAN

WHEN A REDBIRD SAYS "WET, WET", A HEAVY
RAIN IS EXPECTED.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Keyword(s): WEATHER

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Bird
BELIEF -- Cloud Fog Mist Rain Hail Ice Snow Frost Dew

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BLACK AMERICAN

TO RID ARTICLES OF MILDEW, LET THEM
SOAK IN BUTTERMILK AND SALT, THEN
PLACE THEM IN THE SUN.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Keyword(s): MILDEW

Subject headings: Favorites

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BLACK-AMERICAN CURE

FOR DIARRHEA, SPRINKLE BLACK PEPPER
IN A CUP OF WARM MILK. TAKE 3 TO
4 TABLESPOONS TWICE A DAY.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Keyword(s): DIARRHEA

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Plant

Date learned: 09-20-1985

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BLACK-AMERICAN JOKE

CLOTELLE AND WILLIE MAE WERE EXCELLENT RABBIT
HUNTERS. ONE DAY THEY BOTH HAPPENED TO SPOT
A RABBIT AND THEY BOTH SHOT AT THE RABBIT
AT THE SAME TIME. THEY ARGUED CONTINUOUSLY
ABOUT WHO THE RABBIT BELONGED TO. THE
DEPUTY SHERIFF CAME ALONG AND ASKED "WHAT
Y'ALL ARGUING BOUT? THEY EACH CLAIMED THE
RABBIT WAS THEIRS. HE COULDN'T SETTLE THE
ARGUMENT, SO HE TOOK THEM TO THE STATION
TO SEE THE HIGH SHERIFF. THE HIGH SHERIFF
WAS SITTING IN A CHAIR EATING WALNUTS. HE
ASKED THE WOMEN WHAT WAS THE PROBLEM? CLOTELLE
REPLIED, "I KILT THE RABBIT"; WILLIE MAE SAID,
"I KILT THE RABBIT". THE SHERIFF THEN SAID,
"WELL, WHICHEVER ONE OF YOU PERFORMS THE BEST
TRICK, GETS THE RABBIT." CLOTELLE CHEWED
TOBACCO, SO SHE STOOD 12 FEET FROM THE DOOR
AND SPIT A CLEAN SHOT THROUGH THE KEYHOLE
WITHOUT TOUCHING A SIDE. THEN WILLIE MAE
JUMPED UP AND SAID, "SHERIFF, WHATCHA EATING,
WALNUTS?" THE SHERIFF REPLIED, "YEAH." WILLIE
MAE INSTRUCTED HIM TO SIT IN HIS CHAIR, CLOSE
HIS EYES, REAR YOUR HEAD BACK AND THROW ME ONE
OF THEM WALNUTS. HE DID SO. SHE PUT THE WALNUT
BETWEEN HER LEGS, CRACKED IT, PEELED IT AND SHOT
IT BACK IN THE SHERIFF'S MOUTH. THE SHERIFF
THEN REPLIED, "WILLIE MAE, WHEN YOU FINISH FRYING
THAT THAR RABBIT, YOU COME ON BACK DOWN HERE AND
CRACK SOME MORE WALNUTS FOR ME."

Submitter comment: I COULD NEVER GET THE EFFECT WRITING AS MR.
HAMMETT DOES TELLING.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Jest Anecdote

Date learned: 09-20-1985

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BLACK AMERICAN

IF YOU CAN'T MAKE IT, DON'T
FAKE IT, LET SOMEBODY ELSE TAKE
IT, CAUSE IT'S NOT THE DEPTHS OF
THE RIVER THAT DROWNS A MAN, IT'S
THE WATER. SHOW AS FAT IS GREASY,
YOU WILL GO SEE SISTER LOUWEEZY,
AND MONA LISA WAS A WOMAN.

Submitter comment: CURIOUS ABOUT SISTER LOUWEEZY, HE
INFORMED ME THAT SHE WAS A VOO-DOO
WOMAN.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

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

Date learned: 09-20-1985

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BLACK-AMERICAN JOKE

ONCE TWO FRIENDS WERE WALKING DOWN
MAIN STREET IN NATCHEZ, MISSIPPI.
ONE OF THE MEN STUTTERED VERY BADLY.
THE STUTTERER LOOKED UP AND SUDDENLY
CRIED OUT "MA MA MA MA MA MA MA MAN
DID U U U U U U U U YOU SEE SEE SEE
THAT GIR GIR GIR GIR GIR GIRL WI WI
WI WI WI WITH THEM PUR PUR PUR PUR
PURTY LEGS?" HIS FRIEND REPLIED,
"WHAR?" THE STUTTERER SAID, "OH, OH
OH, OH, HER GONE NOW." THEY PROCEEDED
WALKING WHEN THE STUTTERER NOTICED
ANOTHER PRETTY GIRL AND WENT THROUGH
THE SAME LONG QUESTION TO HIS FRIEND;
HOWEVER, BY THE TIME HE GOT IT OUT,
HIS FRIEND HAD MISSED SEEING THE
PRETTY GIRL AGAIN. AS THEY CONTINUED
THEIR WALK, THE STUTTERER CRIED OUT
AGAIN, "MA MA MA MA MA MAN, DI DI DI
DI DID YOU," AND BEFORE HE COULD GET
FINISHED WITH HIS QUESTION, HIS FRUSTRATED
FRIEND CRIED OUT, "MAN, I SEED IT, I
SEED IT." THE STUTTERER THEN REPLIED,
"WELL IF YOU SEED IT, WHATCHA GO AND
STEP IN IT FOR?".

Submitter comment: MANNERISMS, ACCENT AND JESTURES OF THIS
PERSON IS AUTHENTIC.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Jest Anecdote

Date learned: 09-20-1985

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BLACK AMERICAN

ONCE UPON A TIME THERE WAS A FRENCHMAN
NAMED HAROLD BENOIT. HE STEPPED OFF
THE BUS IN NATCHEZ, MISSISSIPPI, AND
WAS CONFRONTED BY A GENTLEMAN WITH A
GUN IN HIS HAND, WHO ASKED, "ARE YOU
HAROLD BENOIT?" THE FRENCHMAN REPLIED,
I SUSPECT YOU'RE RIGHT. THE MAN THEN
ASKED, " YOU EVER BEEN TO PITTSBURGH?"
MR. BENOIT CHECKED HIS LITTLE BLACK
BOOK UNDER P'S, AND REPLIED, YES, I'VE
VISITED PITTSBURGH. THE MAN THEN ASKED,
"WELL, DIDJA EVER KNOW OR MEET A LADY
MORRIS?" BENOIT CHECKED HIS BOOK UNDER
A'S FOR ACQUAINTANCES, AND RESPONDED,
YES, I KNEW A LADY MORRIS. THE MAN
THEN ASKED, "DIDJA EVER HAVE AN AFFAIR
WITH LADY MORRIS?" BENOIT CHECKED HIS
BOOK UNDER F FOR AFFAIRS AND RESPONDED,
YES, I SURELY DID HAVE AN AFFAIR WITH
LADY MORRIS. THE MAN THEN REPLIED
ANGRILY, "WELL I'M SIR MORRIS AND I
DON'T LIKE THAT ONE BIT." BENOIT
THEN LOOKED IN HIS BLACK BOOK UNDER
O'S FOR OPINIONS AND RESPONDED, "I
DON'T BLAME YOU SIR, I DIDN'T LIKE
IT EITHER."

Submitter comment: HILARIOUS

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Keyword(s): JOKE

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Jest Anecdote

Date learned: 09-20-1985

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BLACK-AMERICAN BELIEF

WHEN BABIES SMILE WHILE SLEEPING,
ANGELS ARE PLAYING WITH THEM.
MOTHER USED TO TELL ME THIS WHEN
I WAS A KID.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Angel

Date learned: 00001950S

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BLACK-AMERICAN JOKE

WHEN I WAS A YOUNG BOY, BLACK PEOPLE
WEREN'T USED TO CARS WITH AIR CON-
DITIONING. ONE DAY OLD NATHAN WAS
WALKING DOWN THE ROAD AND MR. NETTERVILLE
DROVE ALONG AND ASKED NATHAN IF HE WANTED
A RIDE. NATHAN ACCEPTED AND GOT IN THE
AIR-CONDITIONED CAR. MR. NETTERVILLE
AFTER ABOUT TEN MINUTES ASKED NATHAN WHERE
HE WAS GOING. NATHAN RESPONDED, "I WAS
ON MY WAY TO THE LOW 40'S TO DO SOME PLOWING,
BUT SINCE THE WEATHER HAS CHANGED, YOU CAN
LET ME OUT SO I CAN GO BACK HOME AND KILL
A HAWG."

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Jest Anecdote

Date learned: 09-20-1985

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BLACK-AMERICAN JUMP-ROPE RHYME

MISS LUCY HAD A BABY, HER BABY
HAD A BELT, MISS LUCY WENT TO
HEAVEN, HER BABY WENT TO HELLO
OPERATOR, GIVE ME NUMBER NINE
AND IF YOU DON'T CONNECT ME, I'LL
KICK YOU RIGHT BEHIND THE FRIGERATOR
THERE WAS A PIECE OF GLASS, MISS
LUCY SLIPPED RIGHT ON IT AND CUT HER
BIG FAT ASK ME NO MORE QUESTIONS, I'LL
TELL YOU NO MORE LIES, MISS LUCY TOLD
ME ALL OF THIS THE DAY BEFORE SHE DIED.

Submitter comment: INFORMANT AND CHILDHOOD FRIENDS USED TO
SING THIS JINGLE WHILE JUMPING ROPE.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Autograph Verse C760.560

Date learned: 09-20-1985

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BLACK-AMERICAN JOKE

I WAS ON MY WAY DOWN IN LOUISIANA ONE DAY
TO DO SOME HUNTING. A MAN GOT ON THE BUS
WITH WHAT HE CLAIMED WAS THE BEST HUNTING
DOG IN THE WORLD. THE OTHER HUNTERS
CHALLENGED HIM TO PROVE IT. THEY ARRIVED
AT THE HUNTING GROUNDS AND THE DOG HIT THE
TRAIL YELPING AWAY. HE STRUCK A TRAIL
IMMEDIATELY THAT RUN HIM ABOUT TWO MILES,
WHEN ALL OF A SUDDEN, HE STOPPED AND WAS
SEEN TIP-TOEING VERY QUIETLY FOR ANOTHER
TWO MILES. SUDDENLY THE DOG BEGAN TO
BARK AND YELP WHOLEHEARTEDLY. THE MEN
CURIOUSLY ASKED, "WHY WAS HE QUIET BACK
YONDER IN THAT STRETCH?" THE OWNER
REPLIED, "DIDN'T CHA SEE THAT NO POSTED
SIGN OVER THAR?"

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Jest Anecdote

Date learned: 09-20-1985

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BLACK-AMERICAN JOKE

ONCE AT A HUNTING CAMP A MAN WAS BRAGGING
ABOUT HIS PRIME SQUIRREL DOG AND HOW
TERRIBLY GOOD HE WAS. OF COURSE HE HAD
TO SHOW PROOF, SO HE TOOK THE DOG OUT
AND THE DOG IMMEDIATELY STRUCK A TRAIL.
WHEN THE MEN CAUGHT UP WITH THE DOG,
HE WAS LYING ON THE GROUND WITH TWO
FOOTS UP IN THE AIR. THEY ASKED WHY;
THE OWNER EXPLAINED THAT HE HAD TREED
TWO SQUIRRELS. THE MEN EXCLAIMED HOW
GOOD THAT WAS. THE DOG THEN STRUCK
ANOTHER TRAIL AND THEY FOUND HIM THIS
TIME LYING ON THE GROUND WITH FOUR
FOOTS IN THE AIR. OF COURSE THIS
TIME HE HAD TREED FOUR SQUIRRELS. THE
MEN MARVELED AT HIS COMPETENCY. THEN
BLUE BROKE AWAY AGAIN AND WHEN THE
HUNTERS CAUGHT UP WITH HIM, HE WAS LYING
ON THE GROUND WITH FOUR FOOTS IN THE AIR
AND HIS TAIL IN HIS BEHIND. THE HUNTERS
ASKED THE OWNER WHAT BLUE WAS DOING THIS
TIME. THE HUNTER SAID THAT BLUE WAS
SAYING THAT THERE WERE FOUR SQUIRRELS IN
THE TREE, BUT THEY SCREWED AROUND COMING
ACROSS THE HOLLER SO LONG THAT THE SQUIRRELS
WENT IN THE HOLE.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Jest Anecdote

Date learned: 09-20-1985

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BELIEF

WHEN CUTTING ONIONS, CLOSING ONE'S MOUTH WILL KEEP HIM FROM
CRYING.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI ; CANTON

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Fate Destiny Luck Chance

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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