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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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CURE

TREATMENT FOR SUNBURN: PLACE A FRYING PAN ON THE HEAD
(TO DRAW OUT THE HEAT).

Submitter comment: HE HEARD THIS FROM HIS MOTHER.

Where learned: HOME ; MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Keyword(s): TRANSFERENCE

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Method of Curing

Date learned: NOT RECORDED

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BIRTH BELIEFS

BABIES ARE BORN BY THE OPENING OF THE MOTHER'S BREASTS, DEPENDING ON
WHICH BREAST IS OPEN IS WHAT DECIDES IF IT IS A BOY OR GIRL.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Body part Senses
BELIEF -- Birth

Date learned: 02-00-1977

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OMEN

AN OWL IS A SIGN OF DEATH. IF YOU SEE AN OWL IN YOUR YARD,
THERE WILL BE A DEATH IN YOUR HOUSE.

Submitter comment: HE LEARNED THIS FROM HIS MOTHER. IN FACT, SHE SAW AN OWL IN THE
YARD ONCE, AND THREE DAYS LATER HER HUSBAND DIED.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Subject headings: Observation

Date learned: 12-01-1967

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MACEDONIAN GREEK ORTHODOX FUNERAL

THE FUNERAL CEREMONY OF THE GREEK ORTHODOX IS MUCH LIKE ANY
OTHER RELIGION ITSELF, BUT MANY SYMBOLS ARE USED. THE PALLBEARERS
MUST WEAR WHITE GLOVES SO THEY DO NOT
STAIN THE SOUL OF THE DEAD PERSON
WHEN THE PROCESSION GETS TO THE CEMETERY EVERYONE IS GIVEN A CANDLE,
THE SYMBOL OF ETERNAL LIFE. THE PALLBEARERS ARE GIVEN THREE
REMEMBRANCES OF THE DECEASED LIKE A PAIR
OF SOCKS, A PITCHER, AND A TOWEL
ALSO AT THE CEMETERY THEY EAT BREAD AND
DRINK WINE. THE BROTHERS OF THE
DECEASED CAN NOT SHAVE FOR SIX WEEKS AFTER
THE DEATH BECAUSE THE SHAVINGS
WILL FALL IN THE EYES OF THE DEAD PERSON
AND WILL NOT BE ABLE TO SEE
THE GATES OF HEAVEN.
THE PALLBEARERS AND FAMILY MUST MEET AT THE
CEMETARY THREE, SIX, NINE, AND
TWELVE MONTHS AFTER THE DEATH OF THE PERSON.
AND THEN EACH YEAR AFTER
AS LONG AS THE MOTHER WANTS. AT EACH
MEETING THE PALLBEARERS ARE AGAIN GIVEN
SOME ARTICLES IN REMEMBRANCE AND BREAD AND WINE IS HAD. ALSO
EACH PERSON IS GIVEN A CANDLE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Subject headings: 686 Seconds / Twice / Two
686 Thirds / Thrice / Three / Triple
686 Sixths / Six
686 Ninths / Nine
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Death Funeral Burial
BELIEF -- Ghost Spirit Phantom Specter
BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial
BELIEF -- Measure of time Year
BELIEF -- Color

Date learned: 00-00-1979

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MACEDONIAN GREEK ORTHODOX WEDDING

BEFORE THE WEDDING, THERE IS A GIFT GIVING
CEREMONY AT THE BRIDE'S HOUSE.
THE FATHER OF THE BRIDE SHARES BREAD AND
WINE WITH THE BRIDE BEFORE THE
GIFTS. THE BRIDE PUTS ON HER WEDDING
DRESS AND IS THEN PRESENTED WITH
GIFTS. THE FATHER IS FIRST TO GIVE A
GIFT, FOLLOWED BY HER FEMALE
RELATIVES. THE GIFTS ARE EITHER GIFTS OF
MONEY OR LINGERIE, EXCEPT FOR
THE FATHER'S GIFT.
WHILE THIS IS TAKING PLACE THE GROOM WAITS IN THE CHURCH. HE IS NOT
ALLOWED TO SEE THE BRIDE UNTIL THE CEREMONY. THE GROOM AT THIS TIME
SIGNS A CONTRACT WITNESSED BY TWO MEMBERS OF THE WEDDING PARTY, THE
"NUNCA" OR GODFATHER AND THE BEST MAN.
WHEN THE CEREMONY BEGINS, EACH MALE MEMBER OF THE WEDDING PARTY WAITS
AS HIS PARTNER WALKS DOWN THE AISLE FROM THE REAR OF THE CHURCH. HE
GREETS HER IN THE CENTER OF THE AISLE.
THEY WALK TO THE ALTAR, BOW THEIR
HEADS. THEY THEN DIVIDE AND STAND ON
OPPOSITE SIDES OF THE ALTAR, THE
MEN ON THE RIGHT AND THE WOMEN ON THE LEFT AS BEING LOOKED AT BY THE
CONGREGATION. SECOND TO LAST ARE THE NUNCAS
OR GODPARENTS OF THE BRIDE
AND GROOM. THE NUNCAS MUST BE A MARRIED COUPLE.
LASTLY THE BRIDE WALKS
DOWN THE AISLE WITH HER FATHER, THEY ARE GREETED
BY THE GROOM ABOUT A
QUARTER OF THE WAY UP THE AISLE WHERE THE FATHER GIVES AWAY THE
DAUGHTER. THE FATHER LIFTS THE VEIL
FROM THE FACE OF THE BRIDE , GIVES
HER A KISS, AND THEN SHAKES THE GROOMS HAND AND SITS DOWN. THE BRIDE
AND GROOM THEN WALK UP TO THE ALTAR WHERE THE NUNCAS AND PRIEST WAIT.
NEXT COMES THE ACTUAL CEREMONY. THE NUNCAS
STAND BEHIND THE BRIDE AND
GROOM, CARRYING CANDLES. ONE OF THE COUPLES IN THE WEDDING PARTY
STAND BESIDE THE BRIDE AND GROOM. THE RING CEREMONY IS FIRST. THE
GROOM PUTS ON THE BRIDE'S RING AND THE
BRIDE PUTS ON THE GROOM'S. THE
PRIEST EXCHANGES THE RINGS THREE TIMES,
A SYMBOL OF THE BLESSED TRINITY,
EACH TIME KISSING THE RING. THE GROOM
THEN SLIPS THE BRIDE'S RING ON HER
FINGER AS HE SAYS HIS VOWS. THEN THE
BRIDE DOES THE SAME. NEXT COMES
THE CEREMONY OF THE CROWNS. THE PRIEST
BRINGS OUT THE CROWNS AND MAKES
THE SIGN OF THE CROSS WITH THEM. NEXT THE BRIDE KISSES THE GROOM'S
CROWN AND THE GROOM DOES THE SAME TO THE BRIDE'S. THIS IS DONE THREE
TIMES. THE PRIEST THEN TOUCHES THE CROWNS
TO THEIR HEADS. HE THEN SWITCHES
THE CROWNS BACK AND FORTH THREE TIMES.
HE PLACES THE CROWNS ON TOP OF THEIR
HEADS. THE CROWNS ARE SYMBOLS OF BEING KING
AND QUEEN OF THE HOUSEHOLD.
THE CROWNS ARE HELD IN PLACE BY THE COUPLE
WHO STAND BESIDE THE BRIDE AND
GROOM. NOW THE NUNCAS GIVE THE BRIDE AND
GROOM THE CANDLES. THE PRIEST,
NUNCAS, BRIDE AND GROOM, AND COUPLE FROM
THE WEDDING PARTY WALK AROUND
THE ALTAR THREE TIMES. THEY ARE NOW MAN
AND WIFE. THEY LEAVE THE CHURCH
HOLDING THE CANDLES, WITH THE WEDDING PARTY
AND FORM A RECEPTION LINE IN
THE VESTIBULE. THE MALE MEMBERS OF
THE BRIDE'S RELATIVES NOW GIVE HER
GIFTS OF MONEY. NEXT IS THE RECEPTION.
AT THE RECEPTION THERE IS EATING
AND DRINKING FOLLOWED BY A TRADITIONAL DANCE.
THE DANCE IS AS FOLLOWS:
A LINE IS FORMED BY EACH PERSON PUTTING HIS
OR HER HAND ON THE OTHER
PERSON'S SHOULDER, ARMS OUTSTRETCHED.
THE FIRST PERSON IS CARRYING ALOAF
OF BREAD. IT LOOKS LIKE A CAKE. THE DANCE
IS DONE BY STEPPING RIGHT WITH THE RIGHT FOOT. NEXT CROSS THE LEFT
FOOT BEHIND THE RIGHT. NOW STEP
TO THE RIGHT AGAIN WITH THE RIGHT FOOT.
NEXT KICK YOUR LEFT LEG OUT IN
FRONT OF YOUR RIGHT THEN RETURN IT TO THE
POSITION IT WAS AT. NOW CROSS
YOUR RIGHT FOOT OVER YOUR LEFT THEN STEP
TO YOUR LEFT WITH YOUR LEFT FOOT.
NOW KICK YOUR RIGHT LEG OVER YOUR LEFT
AND RETURN IT TO ITS POSITION.
REPEAT THESE STEPS. TO GET THE FIRST POSITION
IN LINE YOU MUST WALK UP
AND PUT MONEY ON THE BREAD THEN TAKE IT
FROM THE PERSON. BE SURE NOT
TO DROP IT OR YOU WILL BRING BAD LUCK TO THE COUPLE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Subject headings: 686 Thirds / Thrice / Three / Triple
Favorites
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Group
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Marriage
BELIEF -- Bad luck
SPEECH -- Gesture

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SUPERSTITIOUS BELIEF

WHEN GIVING KNIVES AS A GIFT, IF YOU DON'T GIVE THE PERSON MONEY
ALONG WITH THE GIFT THEN THAT PERSON WILL BE CUT BY THE KNIVES.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

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

Date learned: 10-00-1981

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CHRISTMAS CUSTOM

YOU SHOULD GROW WHEAT IN YOUR HOME TO INSURE GOOD
LUCK.

Submitter comment: SHE HEARD THIS FROM HER MOTHER.

Data entry tech comment: SHE APPARENTLY MEANS DISPLAY WHEAT--NOT GROW IT AT HOME.
CN[ JACOB, THOMAS W.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Beliefs
BELIEF -- Good luck

Date learned: 12-01-1967

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AFTER THE WEDDING, EVERYONE GOES BACK TO THE BRIDE'S
HOUSE AND THE GROOM COLLECTS MONEY FOR THE FIRST
BABY.

Submitter comment: SHE LEARNED THIS FROM HER MOTHER AND IT WAS PRACTICED
AT HER WEDDING.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Marriage Reception

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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REMOVAL OF THE BRIDAL VEIL SIGNIFIES THAT THE BRIDE
IS NOW A MARRIED WOMAN.

Submitter comment: SHE LEARNED THIS FROM HER MOTHER.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Marriage Removing veil

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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ON NEW YEAR'S THE FIRST PERSON TO ENTER YOUR HOUSE MUST
BE A MALE IF YOU ARE TO HAVE GOOD LUCK.

Submitter comment: HE HEARD THIS FROM HIS PARENTS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 1 New Year's
BELIEF -- Good luck

Date learned: 12-01-1967

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AFTER NEW YEAR'S THE PRIEST SHOULD COME AND BLESS YOUR
HOUSE, AND WRITE THE SIGN OF THE CROSS AND J.M.J. OVER
THE DOOR.

Submitter comment: LEARNED FROM HER MOTHER.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Keyword(s): J.M.J.=JESUS, MARY, JOSEPH.

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 1 New Year's
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- 39815
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 6 Twelfth Day Epiphany

Date learned: 12-01-1967

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CHRISTMAS EVE MEAL: EAT NO MEAT; ONLY DAIRY PRODUCTS.

Submitter comment: HE HEARD THIS FROM HIS PARENTS AND STILL PRACTICES
IT.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 24 Christmas Eve Menus

Date learned: 12-01-1967

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ON CHRISTMAS EVE A PLACE AT THE TABLE SHOULD BE
SET FOR THE DEAD.

Submitter comment: HE LEARNED THIS FROM HIS MOTHER.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 24 Christmas Eve Table setting and clearing

Date learned: 12-01-1967

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KISS OF PEACE: ON CHRISTMAS DAY, KISS EVERYONE IN THE
FAMILY--A SYMBOL OF PEACE AND GOOD LUCK IN THE FAMILY.

Submitter comment: SHE LEARNED THIS FROM HER MOTHER AND IT IS STILL
PRACTICED IN HER FAMILY.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 25 Christmas Also see F642, below.
BELIEF -- Good luck

Date learned: 12-01-1967

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PLACING STRAW UNDER THE DINNER TABLE WILL INSURE THAT
EVERYONE IN THE FAMILY WILL GO TO HEAVEN.

Submitter comment: SHE HEARD THIS FROM HER MOTHER AND PRACTICES THIS
CUSTOM.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Subject headings: Prediction / Divination
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 25 Christmas Also see F642, below.

Date learned: 12-01-1967

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CHRISTMAS CUSTOM

YOU SHOULD GROW WHEAT IN YOUR HOME TO INSURE GOOD
LUCK.

Submitter comment: SHE HEARD THIS FROM HER MOTHER.

Data entry tech comment: SHE APPARENTLY MEANS DISPLAY WHEAT--NOT GROW IT AT HOME.
CN[ JACOB, THOMAS W.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Beliefs
BELIEF -- Good luck

Date learned: 12-01-1967

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THE BASKETS ARE BLESSED BY THE PRIEST IN CHURCH.

Submitter comment: LEARNED FROM HIS PARENTS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Spring Planting Easter Sunday

Date learned: 12-01-1967

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STONE AND COPPER ART

TWO 5X8 CARDS SHOWING TWO 3X3 COLOR PHOTOS OF THE ARTWORK
SEE SU 692406-1 TO 692406-2

Submitter comment: THIS ARTWORK COMES FROM BRAZIL. ON THE BACK OF EACH PIECE IS THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION
(ORIGINAL SPELLING RETAINED). I DECLARE THAT THIS IS REAL COPPER HANDWORK, APPLICATED ONTO
TRUE FOSSILISED STONE WHICH IS MORE TAN 120 MILLIONS YEARS OLD. MADE BIJ YOUR WELKNOWN DUTCH
ARTIST, JOHANNES WILHELMUS VAN DARTELEN. UNIQUE IN THE WORLD: THE ARTIST GIVES HIS ADDRESS AS
AVENIDA BRASIL 456, CAMPINAS, E.S.PAULO, BRASIL IF WHAT THE ARTIST SAYS ABOUT HIS WORK BEING
UNIQUE IS TRUE THEN THE ARTWORK ISN'T REALLY FOLKART. I TURNED IT IN HOWEVER FOR I CANNOT
BELIEVE THAT HE IS THE ONLY PERSON IN THE WORLD THAT MAKES THIS TYPE OF ARTWORK.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; PARENTS HOME ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Subject headings: ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- Metal Stone Bone Gold Silver Copper
ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- Metal Stone Bone Stone

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LIMERICK

THERE WAS A YOUNG LADY FROM YETTA/ WHO FANCIED HERSELF IN A SWETTA/
THREE REASONS SHE HAD/ TO KEEP WARM WAS NOT BAD/ BUT THE OTHER TWO
REASONS WERE BETTA

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

James Callow Keyword(s): INDIRECTION FOR BREASTS ; SWEATER

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

Date learned: 00-00-1969

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SKUNK MISTAKEN FOR CAT

MY GREAT-GRANDPARENTS OWNED A FARM IN MASSACHUSETTS . THEY HAD AN
OLD MAN WORKING FOR THEM WHO WAS ALSO RENTING AN OLD CABIN MY
GREAT-GRANDFATHER HAD ON HIS LAND. ONE NIGHT THE OLD MAN CAME HOME
LATE FROM THE BAR AND AT HIS STEPS WAS WHAT HE THOUGHT TO BE MY
GREAT-GRANDPARENTS' CAT. THE OLD MAN PICKED UP THE ANIMAL AND
STARTED TO PET IT. WHEN HE GOT INSIDE THE CABIN HE LIT A MATCH TO
LIGHT THE LAMP. WHEN HE LIT THE MATCH HE SCARED THE SKUNK WHO LET
THE OLD MAN HAVE IT RIGHT BETWEEN THE EYES. THE OLD MAN COULDN'T
SEE VERY WELL FOR ABOUT THREE DAYS AFTER IT HAPPENED

Submitter comment: THIS IS TOLD AS A TRUE STORY IN OUR FAMILY. IT CAN BE HEARD
ANYTIME THE OLDER MEMBERS OF THE FAMILY GET TOGETHER AND START
TO TALK ABOUT THE GOOD OLD DAYS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Mammal
PROSE NARRATIVE -- Man

Date learned: 10-00-1973

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