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James Callow Folklore Archive

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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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IN OUR FAMILY, THE ELDEST SON PLACES THE DECORATIVE ANGEL ATOP
THE TRIMMED CHRISTMAS TREE. IF HE IS NOT HOME FOR CHRISTMAS,
THE ANGEL IS NOT PUT IN PLACE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ROYAL OAK ; OAKLAND COUNTY

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Street Trip Relations between relatives, friends, host and guest Social class Rank
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Christmas tree

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FAMILY LEGEND HAS IT THAT WHEN MY GREAT-GRANDFATHER
LEFT HIS HOME IN CROATIA, FOR AMERICA, HE PROMISED
HIS GIRL THAT HE WOULD SEND FOR HER WHEN HE HAD
ENOUGH MONEY. HE WORKED AS A CARPENTER, IN CHICAGO,
AND EVENTUALLY SAVED ENOUGH MONEY. HE SENT FOR
HIS LOVE AND WAITED ANXIOUSLY FOR HER ARRIVAL.
WHEN FINALLY HE WENT TO MEET HIS BRIDE-TO-BE
HE FOUND THAT SHE HAD SENT HER SISTER, CATHERINE,
INSTEAD. CATHERINE AND MY GREAT-GRANDFATHER,
MATTHEW SUTE, WERE MARRIED SHORTLY THEREAFTER.

Submitter comment: IT HAS BEEN SPECULATED THAT POSSIBLY CATHERINE
WAS CUNNING ENOUGH TO TAKE HER OLDER SISTER'S
PLACE WITHOUT THE KNOWLEDGE OR CONSENT OF HER
SISTER. MAYBE THE MONEY FOR THE VOYAGE ARRIVED
AND CATHERINE KEPT IT A SECRET. THEN, SHE USED
IT FOR HERSELF, AND DELIVERED A CONVINCING
STORY TO A BEWILDERED MATTHEW.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ROYAL OAK ; OAKLAND COUNTY

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Human Being

Date learned: 11-00-1983

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IF YOUR NECKLACE TURNS AROUND SO THAT THE CLASP IS IN
FRONT AND SOMEONE NOTICES IT, THEN YOU MAKE A WISH
AS YOU TURN THE CLASP AROUND.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ROYAL OAK ; OAKLAND COUNTY

James Callow Keyword(s): POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Prayer

Date learned: 00-00-1983

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I RECALL THE FRUSTRATION I OFTEN FELT WHEN I ASKED
MY FATHER FOR THE TIME.
"TEN TO," HE WOULD INVARIABLY REPLY.
"BUT, DAD," I WOULD CONTINUE, "TEN TO WHAT?"
"TEND TO YOUR OWN BUSINESS," HE'D LAUGH.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ROYAL OAK ; OAKLAND COUNTY

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

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UNTIL I WAS TEN YEARS OLD, THERE WERE ONLY THREE
CHILDREN IN OUR FAMILY. I REMEMBER CLEARLY, MY
FATHER'S RESPONSE TO INQUISITIVE RELATIVES WHO ASKED
IF MY PARENTS PLANNED TO HAVE ANY MORE CHILDREN.
HE'D LAUGH AND SAY, "I'VE GOT AN EENY, MEENY, MINEY
AND I DON'T WANT ANY MO'!"

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ROYAL OAK ; OAKLAND COUNTY

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

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THE ORAL HISTORY OF MY FAMILY INCLUDES THE TALE OF
MY GRANDFATHER'S ARRIVAL AT ELLIS ISLAND, IN THE
EARLY TWENTIETH CENTURY. HE HAD BEEN A STOW-AWAY AND
WAS THEREFORE RELUCTANT TO GIVE HIS NAME TO THE
IMMIGRATION OFFICIAL PROCESSING HIM. HE ASKED THE
OFFICER TO SELECT A NEW NAME FOR HIM, AN AMERICAN
NAME. THE NAME "SHERMAN" WAS CHOSEN FROM THE
SIGNATURE OF ROGER SHERMAN ON THE DECLARATION OF
INDEPENDENCE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ROYAL OAK ; OAKLAND COUNTY

Subject headings: Favorites
PROSE NARRATIVE -- Explanation of a name

Date learned: 00-00-1983

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showing 6 items

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