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James Callow Folklore Archive

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CURER

THERE USED TO BE SIGNS ALONG GRAND RIVER THAT READ "READINGS".
PEOPLE WOULD CALL THESE PLACES TO HAVE ONE OF THE CURERS COME
OVER AND HEAL ONE OF THEIR SICK. THEY WOULD COME OVER WITH A
BIBLE, OPEN IT TO A CERTAIN PASSAGE AND PRAY OVER THE SICK
PERSON. THEN THEY WOULD PLACE A HANDKERCHIEF ON THE PLACE OF
PAIN. AFTER A WHILE THEY WOULD REMOVE IT AND BURN IT IN THE
FIRE. PEOPLE BELIEVED THIS TRANSFERRED THE PAIN TO THE FIRE.
THE SICK PERSON WAS USUALLY WELL AFTER THIS. THESE CURERS
ALSO MADE THE SIGN OF THE CROSS IN FOUR DIFFERENT WAYS AS PART
OF THEIR RITUAL.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; LINCOLN PARK

James Callow Keyword(s): TRANSFER

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications
BELIEF -- Curer
SPEECH -- Gesture

Date learned: 10-03-1972

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