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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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WHY DOGS CHASE RABBITS

ONCE UPON A TIME THERE WAS A VERY RICH FARMER WHO HAD A DOG
WHICH WAS HIS BEST FRIEND AND COMPANION. ONE DAY DURING A
VERY COLD WINTER, THE FARMER TOOK HIS DOG INTO TOWN AND HAD
HIM FITTED WITH BOOTS.
THE DOG HAD A RABBIT WHO WAS A GOOD FRIEND OF HIS. THE RABBIT
SAID THAT HE WAS COLD, AND THE DOG SAID: "I'M NOT COLD. LOOK
AT THE FINE BOOTS MY MASTER BOUGHT FOR ME!"
THE RABBIT SAID: "DO YOU MIND IF I TRY THEM ON?" AND THE DOG
SAID: "NO."
THE RABBIT WALKED A LITTLE WAY TO SEE HOW THEY FELT, THEN HE
RETURNED AND SAID THAT THEY WERE VERY NICE, BUT THAT HE DID NOT
HAVE A GOOD FEEL FOR THEM, AND ASKED IF HE COULD WALK SOME MORE.
OF COURSE THE DOG ALLOWED HIM TO DO SO.
THIS HAPPENED THREE TIMES, AND THE THIRD TIME THE RABBIT DID NOT
RETURN.
AND SO THAT IS WHY DOGS CHASE RABBITS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Animal Tale

Date learned: 07-00-1964

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NOT GIVEN

THIS GUY HAD A BIRD DOG; HE WAS ALWAYS BRAGGING ABOUT HOW GOOD
THIS DOG WAS. ONE DAY HE WENT OUT SHOOTIN' QUAIL. HE SHOT ONE
AND IT FELL INTO THE RIVER. THE DOG JUMPED INTO THE RIVER TO
GET THE BIRD. HE STARTED SWIMMING AFTER IT AND KEPT SWIMMING
AFTER. THE BIRD KEPT FLOATIN' DOWN, THE DOG KEPT SWIMMING AFTER
IT. SO FINALLY THE DOG GOT OUT OF SIGHT. HE SAW IT GO UNDER AND
FIGURED IT HAD DROWNED. HE LEFT FOR HOME. THE NEXT DAY HE WENT
BACK HUNTING IN THE SAME AREA. THE DOG CAME SWIMMING OUT WITH A
FISH, A BIG OLD CATFISH. THE GUY TOOK THE CATFISH AND THE DOG
AND WENT HOME. BUT HE COULDN'T FIGURE IT OUT. HE CLEANED THE
CATFISH AND FOUND THE BIRD IN IT.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Lie Tall tale
BELIEF -- Animal
BELIEF -- Mammal

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NOT GIVEN

THERE'S THIS GUY NAMED STADTON THAT DID A LOT OF HUNTING. HE WAS
HUNTING SQUIRRELS ONE EARLY MORNING ALONG BY A CORN FIELD. THERE
WAS A RAIL FENCE AT THE END OF THE FIELD WHERE THE SQUIRRELS
LIVED. THEY WOULD COME INTO THE CORN FIELD AND EAT THE CORN.
IT WAS BARELY DAYLIGHT AND THIS BEAR CAME ALONG. THAT BEAR WAS
PULLING OFF THOSE EARS OF CORN LIKE A MAN WOULD. HE GOT AN ARMFUL
OF THEM AND THEN WOULD GO DOWN TO A LOWER PLACE AND HEAVE THEM
INTO A BIG CYPRESS STUMP. STADTON SAID HE HAD TO GO DOWN THERE
AND SEE WHY THE BEAR WAS THROWING THEM IN THERE. STADTON WENT
AND HE SAID THE BEAR, HE HAD A HOG IN THAT THERE STUMP AND WAS
FATTENING HIM UP.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Lie Tall tale
Food Drink -- Plant food Vegetable
BELIEF -- Mammal
BELIEF -- Plant

Date learned: 02-07-1972

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NOT GIVEN

IN CANADA THERE'S A LAKE OVER THERE, YOU WOULD HAVE TO WALK A LONG
WAY TO GET THERE 'CAUSE THERE ARE NO ROADS. A LOT OF PEOPLE WENT
THERE 'CAUSE THE FISH WERE SO BIG. THIS FELLA SAID THE MOSQUITOS
WERE BIG, TOO; THEY WERE LIKE HORSEFLIES. THEN THIS FELLA WAS
TALKIN' ABOUT THE FISH THEY CAUGHT. HE SAID, "I DON'T LIKE TO
FISH IN THAT LAKE." SOMEONE ASKED, "WHY NOT?" THE FELLA SAID,
"YOU CAN'T KEEP THE BAIT. THE FISH COME AND STEAL YOUR BAIT.
YOU HAVE TO GO BEHIND A TREE OR SOMETHING TO BAIT YOUR HOOK."

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Lie Tall tale
BELIEF -- Animal

Date learned: 02-07-1972

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NOT GIVEN

THERE'S THIS FELLA ALWAYS TELLING FALSE STORIES WHEN HE CAME INTO
TOWN. THIS FELLA LIVED THERE IN THE COMMUNITY AREA. THE FELLA
WAS TALKING ABOUT HUNTING OUT WEST. HE SAID THAT HE WAS SHOOTIN'
AT A MOUNTAIN GOAT. THEY WERE UP REAL HIGH. HE SAID HE SHOT THE
GOAT AND IT FELL DOWN INTO A KINGBERRY. WHEN IT DID FALL, IT FELL
RIGHT ON A BEAR. IT CHASED THE BEAR OUT OF THE KINGBERRY AND HE
SHOT AT IT TOO.

Submitter comment: A KINGBERY IS A HEAVILY DENSE THICKET WHERE A BEAR MIGHT SLEEP.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Animal
PROSE NARRATIVE -- Lie Tall tale

Date learned: 02-07-1972

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NOT GIVEN

THIS FELLA HAD A HOUNDDOG AND IT WAS USED TO RACCOON HUNT. THE
HIDE WOULD BE SAVED AND THE MEAT EATEN. THIS FELLA SAID HIS DOG
WAS UNBELIEVABLY GOOD. WHEN SOMEONE CAME TO VISIT HIM, HE'D
FIGURE OUT HOW MANY RACCOONS HE WOULD NEED TO FEED THEM. SO HE'D
TAKE THE DOG OUT TO THE SHED WHERE HE HAD ALL THESE RACCOON HIDES
HANGING UP. HE'D LOOK AT THEM, FIND THE ONE HE WANTED, CALL HIS
DOG OVER AND POINT TO THIS RACCOON SKIN. THE HOUND DOG WOULD RARE
UP AND HE'D SNIFF AND SNIFF THE HIDE, THEN TAKE OFF TO THE WOODS.
HE'D COME BACK WITH A RACCOON THE SAME EXACT SIZE OF THE HIDE THE
GUY POINTED TO. HE NEVER CAME BACK WITHOUT IT. THE GUY ALWAYS
KNEW THAT. THIS FELLA, HE SAID HE WAS SORRY 'CAUSE SOMEONE CAME
UP THERE ONE TIME WITH A RACCOON COAT ON. HE SAID HE WAS HOT AND
THE COAT WAS HEAVY SO HE HUNG IT UP THERE. THEN THAT HOUND DOG
UP AND SNIFFED THE COAT AND HE TOOK OFF. THE FELLA SAID, "I'D
NEVER SEE HIM 'CAUSE HE WON'T COME BACK WITHOUT IT."

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Mammal
PROSE NARRATIVE -- Lie Tall tale
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Measure of quantity or weight Solid

Date learned: 02-07-1972

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IF YOUR PALM ITCHES, YOU WILL GET MONEY.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

Subject headings: Spirit / Mind / Body
BELIEF -- Body part Senses

Date learned: 04-06-1971

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PEOPLE USED TO BELIEVE THAT IF YOU PUT YOUR FINGER INSIDE THE SHELL
OF A TERRAPIN, IT WOULD NOT OPEN UP UNTIL IT THUNDERED.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

James Callow Keyword(s): TURTLE REPTILE

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Fish

Date learned: 02-07-1972

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RIDDLE

Q: ROUND AS AN APPLE, THIN AS A KNIFE;/ ANSWER THIS RIDDLE AND I'LL
BE YOUR WIFE.
A: A DIME.

Submitter comment: INFORMANT HEARD FROM FRIEND IN DETROIT.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

Keyword(s): EATABLE (Q) ; MONETARY ITEMS (A) ; PERSON (Q) ; UTENSIL (Q)

James Callow Keyword(s): MARRIAGE PROPOSAL

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Custom Festival C840.545
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Riddle True Riddle
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Marriage Proposal

Date learned: 11-25-1967

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MOON BELIEF

IF THE MOON IS FULL THE CROPS GROW TALL.
THIS WAS NOT GOOD FOR POTATOES BECAUSE THEY WERE ON THE GROUND.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

James Callow Keyword(s): PLANTING BELIEF

Subject headings: Food Drink -- Food
BELIEF -- Moon

Date learned: 02-07-1972

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SNEEZE BELIEF

WHEN A PERSON SNEEZES TWICE ALMOST EVERY TIME HE SNEEZES,
THEN HE IS SUPPOSED TO BE PRETTY INTELLIGENT.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

Subject headings: 686 Seconds / Twice / Two
BELIEF -- Product or activity of man or animal

Date learned: 11-02-1971

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BELIEF

WHENEVER MY MOTHER STARTED TO SAY SOMETHING AND SHE FORGOT WHAT
SHE WAS GOING TO SAY, SHE WOULD SAY, 'IT MUST HAVE BEEN A LIE.'

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Product or activity of man or animal

Date learned: 02-02-1972

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SNEEZING BELIEF

SNEEZING TWICE IN THE NIGHT FOR THREE SUCCESSIVE NIGHTS WAS A SIGN
OF DEATH IN THE HOUSE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

Subject headings: 686 Seconds / Twice / Two
686 Thirds / Thrice / Three / Triple
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Death Funeral Burial
BELIEF -- Product or activity of man or animal

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BELIEF

ON THE RADIO ONE NIGHT I HEARD A SCIENTIST TALKING ABOUT
U.F.O.S (UNIDENTIFIED FLYING OBJECTS). HE EXPRESSED BELIEF
IN THE IDEA THAT THE STAR OF BETHLEHEM WAS ACTUALLY A FLYING SAUCER
FROM VENUS, AND CHRIST WAS VENETIAN.

Submitter comment: HEARD AT THE TIME WHEN U.F.O.'S WERE THE BIG THING IN 1968

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Religious hero
BELIEF -- Sun
BELIEF -- Sign or prediction through Observation of galactic or celestial bodies

Date learned: 00-00-1970

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EVERY EASTER WE WOULD HAVE AN EGG HUNT. THE OLDER ADULTS WOULD HIDE
THE EGGS. THE FOLKS ALL THE WAY FROM TOTS TO YOUNG ADULTS WOULD
HUNT. THEY DIVIDED UP INTO THREE GROUPS OF DIFFERENT AGES. THE
GROUP WITH THE MOST EGGS WON A PRIZE.

Where learned: ALLEN PARK

Keyword(s): GAME

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Special Object or Implement
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Spring Planting Easter eggs
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Spring Planting Easter Sunday

Date learned: 02-07-1972

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ST. JOHN AND SWIMMING

THERE IS AN OLD POLISH SUPERSTITION THAT NO ONE IS SUPPOSED TO GO
SWIMMING BEFORE THE FEAST OF ST. JOHN THE BAPTIST BECAUSE THE WATER
IS NOT BLESSED, AND THEREFORE THE PERSON WILL DROWN.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- June 24 St. John's Day / Midsummer Day
BELIEF -- Religious hero
BELIEF -- Means of Causing or Avoiding Illness

Date learned: 07-00-1964

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ON ASSUMPTION DAY, AUGUST 15, WE WENT TO CHURCH IN THE MORNING
THEN WE HAD A PROCESSION. WE MARCHED ALL AROUND THE CITY IN
HONOR OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN. WE THEN HAD A BIG DINNER. IN THE
AFTERNOON, WE PLAYED BINGO AND EVERY WINNER GOT A FREE TICKET TO
USE LATER AT THE HORSERACES. WE HAD HORSERACING WITHOUT
BETTING. WHOEVER HAD THE SAME TICKET NUMBER AS THAT OF THE WINNING
HORSE WON A FREE PRIZE. AT NIGHT WE DANCED AND HAD FIREWORKS ALL
IN HONOR OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Racing Chasing Fighting
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- August 15 Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
BELIEF -- Religious hero

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OMEN

ITALIANS BELIEVE THAT ON HALLOWEEN NIGHT, THE EVE OF ALL SAINTS DAY,
ALL THE DEAD PEOPLE MARCH IN A PROCESSION, WITH THEIR THUMBS AS
CANDLES. IF ONE HEARS A KNOCK ON THEIR WINDOW NEAR MIDNIGHT, IT
IS A SIGN THAT DEATH WILL OCCUR WITHIN THAT HOUSEHOLD WITHIN THE
YEAR.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

Subject headings: Observation
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- October 31 Halloween
BELIEF -- Ghost Spirit Phantom Specter
BELIEF -- Entertainment Diversion

Date learned: 10-00-1971

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ST. MARTIN'S DAY

AN OLD POLISH SUPERSTITION IS THAT IF THERE IS FROST ON ST.
MARTIN'S DAY, THEN THE PEOPLE CAN PUT THEIR SLEIGHS AWAY AND BRING
THEIR WAGONS OUT FOR THERE WILL BE NO MORE SNOW.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- F111
BELIEF -- Cloud Fog Mist Rain Hail Ice Snow Frost Dew

Date learned: 07-00-1964

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CUSTOM

ON THE DAY WE CELEBRATE THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION, DECEMBER 8TH,
THIS INFORMANT'S MOTHER MAKES SPECIAL BREAD THAT IS THEN BLESSED
BY A PRIEST.

Submitter comment: INFORMANT DID NOT KNOW SPECIFIC REASON BEHIND THE CUSTOM, JUST
THAT IT HAS BEEN DONE FOR GENERATIONS IN HER FAMILY.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- F120
Food Drink -- Plant food Cereal
BELIEF -- Prayer

Date learned: 10-00-1971

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