James T. Callow Folklore Collection

The James T. Callow Folklore Collection helps us celebrate the month of October and the colors of autumn with a song called “October Gave a Party” (shown below) from one submission he received. The person who submitted this noted that the song originated with her aunt who learned this from her mother when she (the aunt) was six years old. Songs like this may have been lost forever if Professor Callow hadn’t devoted time and effort into collecting them. This archive is filled with the magic of folklore, riddles, poems, and songs that visitors may recognize or, like this little song, be introduced to for the first time.

Visitors can find special treats like this song by browsing through the keyword search lists. It’s a fun way to spend a chilly afternoon as fall gets underway full time.

The introduction to the archive tells us this about the archive:

“The University of Detroit Mercy Digital Folklore Archive,¬†founded in 1964 by Professors Frank M. Paulsen and James T. Callow was donated to the University of Detroit Mercy Libraries /Instructional Design Studio in 2009. The archives is comprised at this point of over 42,000 folklore traditions taken from field notes gathered by UDM (formerly University of Detroit) students as part of their course work in ‘Introduction to Folklore,’ ‘Studies in Folklore,’ ‘Folk Groups,’ and ‘Folklore Archiving’. The folklore archive covers traditions gathered between 1964 and 1993. Included in the Archive is the Peabody field note collection containing approximately 12,000 entries from Tennessee and the Southeast.”


October Gave A Party

The Leaves By Hundreds Came
The Chestnut, Oak, And Maple
And Leaves Of Every Name
The Sunshine Spread The Carpet
And Everything Looked Grand
Miss Weather Led The Dancing
Professor Wind The Band
The Chestnuts Came In Yellow
The Oak In Crimson Dress
The Lovely Mrs. Maple
In Scarlet Looked Her Best
All Danced To Their Partners
And Gaily Fluttered By
The Sweet One Like A Rainbow
New-Fallen From The Sky
Then In The Rustic Billow
At Hide And Seek They Played
The Party Broke At Sundown
But Still The Leaves All Stayed
Professor Wind Played Louder
They Flew Along The Ground
And Here The Party Ended
With A Jolly Old Hand Round