A bit of History on Halloween related things!

Discussion in 'Ancient History and Archaeology' started by Debi, Oct 25, 2015.

  1. Debi

    Debi
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  2. Debi

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    [​IMG]
    STARING INTO A MIRROR TO SEE YOUR FUTURE SPOUSE'S FACE.
    Could true love get any creepier? Common lore of the late 1800s to early 1900s said that single women could see the face of their future husband on Halloween by staring into a mirror in a darkened room. Pictured: A Halloween greeting card from 1904.
     
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  3. Debi

    Debi
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    [​IMG]
    FORTUNE TELLING WITH NEIGHBORS.
    The earliest American celebrations of Halloween combined American Indian and European customs. Neighbors would gather at "play parties" to celebrate the harvest by dancing, singing, reminiscing about the dead, and telling each other's fortunes.
     
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  4. 7Christie

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    I never heard or read this. I could see how someone would WANT to see their future spouse this way.
     
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  5. Debi

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    Wiccan, Pagan and Witchcraft Holidays., Samhain Lore

    Samhain, (pronounced SOW-in, SAH-vin, or SAM-hayne) means "End of Summer", and is the third and final Harvest. The dark winter half of the year commences on this Sabbat.

    It is generally celebrated on October 31st, but some traditions prefer November 1st. It is one of the two "spirit-nights" each year, the other being Beltane. It is a magical interval when the mundane laws of time and space are temporarily suspended, and the Thin Veil between the worlds is lifted. Communicating with ancestors and departed loved ones is easy at this time, for they journey through this world on their way to the Summerlands. It is a time to study the Dark Mysteries and honor the Dark Mother and the Dark Father, symbolized by the Crone and her aged Consort.

    Originally the "Feast of the Dead" was celebrated in Celtic countries by leaving food offerings on altars and doorsteps for the "wandering dead". Today a lot of practitioners still carry out that tradition. Single candles were lit and left in a window to help guide the spirits of ancestors and loved ones home. Extra chairs were set to the table and around the hearth for the unseen guest. Apples were buried along roadsides and paths for spirits who were lost or had no descendants to provide for them. Turnips were hollowed out and carved to look like protective spirits, for this was a night of magic and chaos. The Wee Folke became very active, pulling pranks on unsuspecting humans. Traveling after dark was was not advised. People dressed in white (like ghosts), wore disguises made of straw, or dressed as the opposite gender in order to fool the Nature spirits.

    This was the time that the cattle and other livestock were slaughtered for eating in the ensuing winter months. Any crops still in the field on Samhain were considered taboo, and left as offerings to the Nature spirits. Bonfires were built, (originally called bone-fires, for after feasting, the bones were thrown in the fire as offerings for healthy and plentiful livestock in the New Year) and stones were marked with peoples names. Then they were thrown into the fire, to be retrieved in the morning. The condition of the retrieved stone foretold of that person's fortune in the coming year. Hearth fires were also lit from the village bonfire to ensure unity, and the ashes were spread over the harvested fields to protect and bless the land.

    Various other names for this Greater Sabbat are Third Harvest, Samana, Day of the Dead, Old Hallowmas (Scottish/Celtic), Vigil of Saman, Shadowfest (Strega), and Samhuinn. Also known as All Hallow's Eve, (that day actually falls on November 7th), and Martinmas (that is celebrated November 11th), Samhain is now generally considered the Witch's New Year.

    Symbolism of Samhain:
    Third Harvest, the Dark Mysteries, Rebirth through Death.

    Symbols of Samhain:
    Gourds, Apples, Black Cats, Jack-O-Lanterns, Besoms.

    Herbs of Samhain:
    Mugwort, Allspice, Broom, Catnip, Deadly Nightshade, Mandrake, Oak leaves, Sage and Straw.

    Foods of Samhain:
    Turnips, Apples, Gourds, Nuts, Mulled Wines, Beef, Pork, Poultry.

    Incense of Samhain:
    Heliotrope, Mint, Nutmeg.

    Colors of Samhain:
    Black, Orange, White, Silver, Gold.

    Stones of Samhain:
    All Black Stones, preferably jet or obsidian.
     
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  6. Debi

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    Celebrating Samhain

    Samhain and its related Christian holiday counterparts continue to be religious in focus and spiritually observed by adherents. Although observances may include merry-making, the honoring of the Dead that is central to Samhain is a serious religious practice rather than a light-hearted make-believe re-enactment. Today's Pagan Samhain rites, while somber, are benevolent, and, although centered on death, do not involve human or animal sacrifices.
     
  7. Debi

    Debi
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    In that spirit, we've tracked down five of the creepiest tales and urban legends that really happened to real people, proving once and for all that nothing is more terrifying than everyday life.

    The Dead Body Under Your Freaking Matress
    [​IMG]

    The Legend:
    A couple checks into a hotel and have to put up with a foul odor in their room all night. They call the staff to complain and somebody figures out the stench is coming from the bed.

    Now, there's no way that scenario is going to have a good ending. You're almost hoping at that point that it'll turn out the last guest just got drunk and pooped behind the headboard. But, no, the staff take off the matress and discover the couple has been sleeping over the rotting body of a dead girl who had been stuffed in the box spring.

    The Truth:
    This actually happened, in Las Vegas. Also, Kansas City, MO and Atlantic City, NJ and several times in Florida and California and, well, let's just say that in or under the bed in a hotel room seems to be a fairly popular destination for the recently deceased.

    It makes sense if you think about it. The closet and under the bed are the two most popular places to hide just about anything, so it's not surprising a hell of a lot of corpses end up there as well. In fact, the odds are pretty good that at least once a guy has killed a prostitute, tried to stuff her under the bed, only to find there was already a body there.
     
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  8. Debi

    Debi
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    The Funhouse Mummy
    [​IMG]

    The Myth:
    A prop at a carnival was discovered not to be made of the usual combination of papier mache and carni spit, but human skin and bone. All the little kiddies at the haunted house had been poking and giggling at a real, mummified dead body.

    The Truth:
    Apparently the smell wasn’t just coming from the convict manning the corndog stand. Back in 1976, a camera crew filming an episode of The Six Million Dollar Man began to set up in the haunted house at the Nu-Pike Amusement Park in Long Beach, Calif.

    [​IMG]

    As they were moving aside a "hanging man" prop, they accidentally knocked off its arm and discovered human bones inside. Bionic, this poor sap wasn’t.

    The story gets stranger. The body was actually that of criminal mastermind Elmer McCurdy, who was killed in a shootout after robbing a train in 1911. The princely sum old Elmer got killed for? $46 (and two jugs of whiskey).



    [​IMG]

    McCurdy was embalmed by the local undertaker, and apparently the guy was so darn pleased with his work that he propped up the corpse in the funeral home as evidence of his skills. People were charged 5 cents to see the corpse, which they paid by dropping a nickel in the cadaver’s mouth. Remember that little bit of history the next time somebody turns their nose up at you for liking Hostel 2.


    Think it can’t get any stranger? Oh, you naïve fool. After several years of raking in the nickels (how exactly these coins were retrieved after being dropped into the corpse’s mouth is something probably best left to the imagination) our enterprising undertaker’s scheme was ruined when McCurdy's brothers showed up to claim him. Of course, these guys weren’t his brothers at all, but wily carnival promoters. From that point on, McCurdy’s mummy went on a morbid mystery tour all around America, popping up at carnivals all over the country before finally coming to rest in Long Beach.

    [​IMG]

    McCurdy is now buried in Oklahoma. Because McCurdy apparently had the most entertaining corpse in history, they prevented anyone else from taking him on tour by dumping concrete on top of the casket. No, really.
     
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  9. Debi

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    The Legend:
    What was thought to be your typically charming Halloween decoration depicting a lynched woman hanging from a tree, turns out to be a genuine suicide.

    The Truth:
    [​IMG]
    In the town of Frederica, Delaware, a 42-year-old woman, perhaps distraught by the fact that she lived in Delaware, hung herself from a tree near a busy road on a Tuesday night. The body managed to hang there until the next day and was viewed by many unwitting (or perhaps retarded) spectators before somebody realized it wasn't a decoration and finally called the police.

    Once again it's the lack of complaints from passers-by that amaze us. Even if the hanging thing wasn't a body, it was something that looked exactly like one and would be considered an extremely distasteful Halloween decoration (unless she put on a wacky witch's costume before doing the deed).

    With the political correctness these days, you'd have expected two special city council meetings and 30 letters to the editor within the first ten minutes of someone seeing it.

    We can't help but wonder, if the person who eventually called the police hadn't bothered, how much longer would the body have hung there? This happened five days before Halloween. Add five days of decomposition to the equation and suddenly you have something a whole lot more terrifying.

    Also, did the woman plan this? She knew what time of year it was, and intentionally hung herself in a public place. Did she want her corpse to blend in with the bed sheet ghosts and stuffed witches around the neighborhood? If so, it sounds like she may have been a fascinating person.
     
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  10. Debi

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    [​IMG]

    The Legend:
    A teenager manages to provide the Halloween show he’s in with the ultimate finale when, while pretending to hang himself in front of the audience, he actually hangs himself.

    The Truth:
    While the fine citizens of Frederica we discussed were perhaps a bit slow on the uptake, the people involved in this hanging-related legend are on the dipshit honor roll. Mainly because it's happenedmore than once.

    Yes, people have repeatedly tried to pull off an imitation hanging for a Halloween show, forgot to include the "imitation" part and went ahead and accidentally killed themselves. Yes, they were pretty much all teenage males.

    [​IMG]
    In one instance, an entire working gallows was built for a show, with the "victim" secured by a harness so that he’d stop just short of actually being hung (take a wild guess how that turned out). Now we’re just thinking aloud here, but if we were standing on a gallows, fake or not, with a rope around our necks, we’d want to take a few precautions. For example, and again just blue-skying, maybe don’t use a real rope that is tied into a real noose that is wrapped around your real neck in a way that could really kill you.

    Perhaps the saddest thing about the story was how completely unnecessary the whole thing was. Here’s a tip for anyone trying to thrill kids on Halloween in the future: You don’t need to hang yourself. Just give out full-sized chocolate bars instead of those not-so-fun "fun-sized" ones. We can guarantee the tykes will be talking about the house that gave out full-sized Snickers bars long after some life-risking stunt was forgotten.
     
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