The History of Halloween

Voices calling out in the night air saying,

“Trick or Treat … Trick or Treat”

Children and their parents race

from house to house

Friends and neighbors meet

along the street

Dressed as characters they

like in their season of life

Some are homemade, some store bought

Bags open and ready to capture FREE candy

What a bounty!

Hope it’s warm enough not to need

costume covering coats!

Have you ever wondered why we celebrate Halloween in America? Halloween originated in Ireland and Scotland as part of the Celtic religion. They called it “All Hallows Day” celebrating it on November 1st. This holiday is still celebrated there as it is here in America. In rural areas they light bonfires as they would in the days of the Celts, and all over the countryside children get dressed up in costumes and walk the neighborhoods trick or treating. The Celts believed that this was a time when the veil between the ghost’s world and our world was thin. They brought the holiday to the United States in the 1900s.

Why do we say “TRICK OR TREAT?” I always thought we were giving our neighbors the right to say, “do a trick for me and I’ll give you a treat.” This is not the case. In Ireland, the phrase was a subtle suggestion that if a treat (candy) was given, then the child would not perform a “trick” on the owner’s house. I like my way better.

The phrase “Trick or treat” came to America as families migrated here. Trick or treating paused during World War II because of sugar rations. After the war was over it came back in full force and is still done today.

What are your favorite Halloween traditions? We like watching movies or reading books to get us in the mood. Our favorite Halloween stories and movies to watch are:


Harry Potter – We love the books and the movies – J.K. Rowling

Miss Fiona’s Stupendous Pumpkin Pie by Mark Kimball Moulton

Legend of Sleepy Hollow Disney cartoon is best

Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson


Monster House

Scooby Doo





Monsters Inc.

The Little Vampire

Heffalump Halloween movie

Hotel Transylvania

The Nightmare before Christmas


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