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THE GREAT SMELLING GUN

MY UNCLE BRAGGED THAT HE COULD KILL MORE GEESE WITH THE
SMELLING GUN. HE WOULD HEAR THE SOUND OF THE GEESE IN THE SKY
AND SHOOT. THEN HE WENT BACK IN THE HOUSE AND WATCHED THE
GEESE FALL OUT OF THE SKY.

Submitter comment: TALL TALE, BRAGGING TO CHILDREN

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI ; NATCHEZ

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Lie Tall tale

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WHICH GETS THROUGH THE PLANK FIRST,
THE BULLET OR THE HOLE?

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI ; NATCHEZ

Subject headings: RIDDLE -- True Riddle

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WHERE DOES YOUR LAP GO WHEN YOU STAND UP? THE SAME PLACE YOUR
FIST GOES WHEN YOU OPEN YOUR HAND.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI ; NATCHEZ

Subject headings: RIDDLE -- True Riddle

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IN HORSE AND BUGGY DAYS BEFORE THERE WERE CHAINS PEOPLE USED
COWHIDE TO HARNESS THEIR WAGONS TO HORSES. MY GRANDFATHER WAS
RETURNING HOME FROM A TRIP AND HAD TO CROSS A CREEK. THE
WAGON GOT STUCK IN THE SAND SO GRANDFATHER TOOK THE HORSES AND
STRETCHED THE COWHIDE ATTACHED THE WAGON AND TIED IT TO A POST
AT THE BARN. THE NEXT MORNING THE SUN WAS SHINING ON THE
WINDOW AND HE LOOKED OUT TO SEE THE WAGON IN FRONT OF THE
BARN. THE SUN SHRANK THE COWHIDE PULLING THE WAGON OUT.

Submitter comment: TALL TALE

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI ; NATCHEZ

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Lie Tall tale

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THREE LITTLE GIRLS LIVED WITH THEIR GRANDMOTHER. SHE SENT HER
GIRLS FOR SPRINGWATER QUITE OFTEN AND THEY DIDN'T LIKE IT.
ONE DAY THE GIRLS MADE A DOLL OF MUD AND SQUIRREL'S HAIR AND
PUT IT IN THE BUSH BESIDE THE GATE LEADING TO THE CREEK. AS
SOON AS THE GRANDMOTHER SAW THIS CREATION SHE FORBID THE
GIRLS TO GO THE CREEK BECAUSE SHE THOUGHT IT WAS UNDER A
VOODOO CURSE.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI ; NATCHEZ

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Jest Anecdote

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TWO SISTERS IN THE DAYS BEFORE DESEGREGATION, IN THE 1940'S,
THEY STOPPED IN THE TOWN OF MT. CLEMENS MICHIGAN. BOTH GIRLS
WERE BLACK, ONE WAS LIGHT SKINNED AND LOOKED WHITE THE OTHER
GIRL WAS DARK. THE LIGHT SISTER TRIED TO SNEAK OUT OF THE CAR
TO A BAKERY BUT THE DARK SISTER FOLLOWED HER. THE LIGHT
SKINNED SISTER TURNED TO THE OTHER AND SAID, "YOU CAN'T GO
WITH ME, THEY DON'T ALLOW COLORED PEOPLE".

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI ; NATCHEZ

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Body part Senses
PROSE NARRATIVE -- Jest Anecdote

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BLACK-AMERICAN BELIEF

THE NUMBER OF WRINKLES IN THE FOREHEAD SHOWS HOW
MANY KIDS YOU WILL HAVE.

Submitter comment: GRANDMOTHER PASSED THIS SAYING.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

James Callow Keyword(s): CHILDREN

Subject headings: Observation
BELIEF -- Body part Senses Specific distinguishing characteristic Dimple, wart, mole, scar, freckle, birthmark, strawberry mark, bruise, spot (on any part of body)
BELIEF -- Birth
BELIEF -- Number Counting beliefs

Date learned: 00-00-1960

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BLACK-AMERICAN BELIEF

IF OVERDUE DURING PREGNANCY, DEFROST REFRIGERATOR
AND LABOR WILL BEGIN.

Submitter comment: HEARD FROM GRANDMOTHER

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

James Callow Keyword(s): HUMOR

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Birth

Date learned: 09-00-1985

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BLACK-AMERICAN JUMP-ROPE PHYME

MY MAMA, YO MAMA, SITTING IN A DITCH.
MY MAMA CALLED YO MAMA A BIG FAT SON-
OF-A-PITCH ME OUTTA THE WINDOW, THROW
ME ON A ROCK, LONG CAME A BUMBLE BEE
AND STUNG ME ON MY COCK-TAIL, VIRGINIA
ALE, 15 CENTS A GLASS, IF YOU DON'T
BELIEVE ME JUST KISS MY BIG FAT ASK ME
NO QUESTIONS, I'LL TELL YOU NO LIE, JUST
FOLLOW ME TO MY HOTEL AND I'LL PROVE IT
TILL I DIE.

Submitter comment: CHILDHOOD JUMP ROPE JINGLE

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

James Callow Keyword(s): EUPHEMISM

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

Date learned: 09-00-1985

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BLACK-AMERICAN BELIEF

WHAT YOU DREAM THE FIRST NIGHT UNDER A
NEW ROOF WILL COME TRUE.

Submitter comment: HEARD BEFORE MOVING INTO A NEW HOME.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

James Callow Keyword(s): METONYMY

Subject headings: 686 Properties attributed to specific numbers or numerals individually.
Spirit / Mind / Body
Favorites

Date learned: 00-00-1957

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BLACK-AMERICAN TALE

ONCE ON A SOUTHERN PLANTATION, THE BUTLER, MOSES,
A HOUSE SLAVE WOULD TATTLE TO THE MASTER ABOUT
EVERYTHING THE HOUSE AND FIELD SLAVES DID. ON
ONE OCCASSION, MOSES TOLD THE MASTER THAT A
FIELD SLAVE HAD STOLEN SOME FOOD. THE MASTER
TOOK THE THIEF TO THE RIVER AND THREW HIM IN.
LATER, DURING A PARTY AT THE BIG HOUSE, MOSES
TOOK A STROLL DOWN NEAR THE RIVER. HE SAW
A SKELETON. UPON CLOSER INSPECTION, THE
SKELETON SPOKE, SAYING, "TEETH AND TONGUE
BROUGHT ME HERE". MOSES INQUIRED, "WHAT?"
THE SKELETON REPLIED, "TEETH AND TONGUE
BROUGHT ME HERE". MOSES, BIG EYED AND
VERY FRIGHTENED, SCURRIED BACK TO THE
BIG HOUSE CRYING FOR HIS MASTER.
THE MASTER, PERTURBED AT BEING DISTURBED DURING
HIS PARTY, ASKED MOSES WHAT WAS THE PROBLEM.
MOSES TOLD HIM THAT HE HAD SEEN A TALKING
SKELETON AT THE RIVER. THE MASTER WARNED
MOSES ABOUT DISTURBING HIS PARTY WITH SUCH
FOOLISHNESS. MOSES PERSISTED WITH HIS ACCOUNT
OF THE TALKING SKELETON DOWN NEAR THE RIVER.
THE MASTER, TIRED OF MOSES' SILLY BABBLING, DE-
CIDED TO CHECK THE RIVER. HOWEVER, HE WARNED
MOSES THAT IF HE WAS LYING, HE WOULD KILL HIM.
THEY RUSHED TO THE RIVER AND COULD NOT FIND
THE TALKING SKELETON. THE MASTER SHOT MOSES
AND LEFT HIM BY THE RIVER TO DIE BEFORE RE-
TURNING TO HIS PARTY. WHILE MOSES LAY DYING,
BY THE RIVER, THE SKELETON REAPPEARED SAYING
"TEETH AND TONGUE BROUGHT ME HERE."

Submitter comment: LEGEND TOLD BY GRANDFATHER WHEN WE TATTLED.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Subject headings: Favorites
PROSE NARRATIVE -- Tale

Date learned: 00001950S

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BLACK-AMERICAN BELIEF

IF IT RAINS WHILE THE SUN IS SHINING,
STICK A NEEDLE IN THE GROUND AND YOU
YOU CAN HEAR THE DEVIL BEATING HIS
WIFE.

Submitter comment: AS A CHILD, I TRIED THIS NUMEROUS
TIMES TO NO EFFECT.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Subject headings: Charm / Enchantment / Conjuration
BELIEF -- Devil Demon
BELIEF -- Sun
BELIEF -- Cloud Fog Mist Rain Hail Ice Snow Frost Dew

Date learned: 00-00-1958

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BLACK-AMERICAN PROVERB

"ROOT YOUNG PIG OR DIE PO HAWG"

Submitter comment: HEARD A COUSIN TELL THIS PROVERB
TO HIS SON WHO WAS DOING BADLY
IN HIS SCHOOL WORK.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Metaphor

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BLACK-AMERICAN BELIEF

WHEN A SPIDER SWINGS DOWN FROM A WEB
IN FRONT OF YOU, YOU WILL SEE A GOOD
FRIEND WHOM YOU ARE NOT EXPECTING.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Keyword(s): SPIDER

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

Date learned: 00-00-1950

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COLD OVEN POUND CAKE (BLACK AMERICAN RECIPE)

1/2 POUND BUTTER
1/2 CUP SOLID VEGETABLE SHORTENING
3 CUPS SUGAR
5 LARGE (6 SMALL) EGGS, BEATEN
3 CUPS SIFTED FLOUR
1/2 TEASPOON SALT
1/2 TEASPOON BAKING POWDER
1 CUP MILK
1/2 TEASPOON VANILLA FLAVORING
1 CUP MILK
1/2 TEASPOON VANILLA FLAVORING
1/4 TEASPOON LEMON (OR COCONUT FLAVORING)
CREAM BUTTER, SHORTENING AND SUGAR; ADD
BEATEN EGGS. SIFT FLOUR, SALT AND BAKING
POWDER. ADD DRY INGREDIENTS TO EGG MIX-
TURE ALTERNATELY WITH MILK. ADD FLAVO-
RINGS. POUR INTO GREASED AND FLOURED
TUBE PAN. PLACE IN COLD OVEN. BAKE AT
350 DEGREES FOR ONE HOUR AND 15 MINUTES--
WITHOUT OPENING DOOR. AFTER TIME IS UP,
CHECK TO SEE IF DONE. (BAKE ANOTHER 15
MINUTES, IF NECESSARY.) INVERT ON RACK
TO COOL.

Submitter comment: PASSED TO MY MOTHER FROM HER GRANDMOTHER

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Subject headings: Food Drink -- Pastry Sweet Dessert

Date learned: 00-00-1958

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BLACK-AMERICAN BELIEF

IF YOU MARRY AS THE HAND OF THE CLOCK
GOES UP, YOU WILL RISE IN THE WORLD.
IF YOU MARRY AS THE HAND OF THE CLOCK
GOES DOWN, YOU WILL NOT SUCCEED IN THE
WORLD.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

James Callow Keyword(s): TIME

Subject headings: Observation
BELIEF -- Marriage
BELIEF -- Measure of time WeekDayHour

Date learned: 00-00-1960

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BLACK-AMERICAN BELIEF

COWS COMING HOME IN THE MIDDLE OF THE DAY
ARE A SIGN OF A BAD STORM.

Submitter comment: HEARD AS A CHILD ON GRANDMOTHER'S FARM.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Keyword(s): WEATHER

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

Date learned: 09-15-1985

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BLACK-AMERICAN BELIEF

PLACE CORNBREAD CRUMBS ABOUT YOUR CUCUMBER
PLANTS. THEY WILL ATTRACT ANTS, WHICH WILL
DESTROY THE CUCUMBER INSECTS.

Submitter comment: HEARD AS A CHILD ON GRANDMOTHER'S FARM

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Keyword(s): CROPS

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Insect
BELIEF -- Animal Husbandry Farming Ranching

Date learned: 00-00-1958

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BLACK-AMERICAN BELIEF

MOLE ON THE EAR, MONEY BY THE YEAR.
MOLE ON THE NECK, MONEY BY THE PECK.
MOLE ON YOUR BACK, MONEY BY THE PACK.
MOLE ON YOUR ARM, YOU ARE A GENTLEMAN'S CHARM.
MOLE ON YOUR ARM, YOU'LL LIVE ON A FARM.

Submitter comment: HEARD WHEN A CHILD FROM GRANDMOTHER.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Subject headings: Favorites
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Belief C860.438
BELIEF -- Body part Senses Specific distinguishing characteristic Dimple, wart, mole, scar, freckle, birthmark, strawberry mark, bruise, spot (on any part of body)

Date learned: 00-00-1957

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BLACK AMERICAN

FOR DEEP CUTS, FIRST CLEAN CUT THOROUGHLY,
THEN WRAP RAW SALT PORK AROUND THE CUT AND
BANDAGE. THE SALT PORK WILL DRAW OUT IN-
FECTION AND PREVENT SWELLING.

Submitter comment: GRANDMOTHER USED THIS METHOD ON HER GRAND-
CHILDREN AND IT REALLY WORKS.

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI

Keyword(s): MEDICATIONS

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Animal

Date learned: 00-00-1955

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