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Credo Reference contains over 600 reference eBooks which are available 24/7 365 days a year. For each search it not only searches the reference eBooks but also provides content from the Library Catalog, CQ Researcher, Gale Virtual Reference Library, World Book Online and credo holiday searchGale’s General OneFile. It also contains cool tools like the Holiday tool.

Enter a holiday like Halloween and find out how other countries celebrate the holiday.

History of Halloween in the United States

A traditional Irish turnip Jack-o'-lantern fro...

Image via Wikipedia

Did you know that Halloween in the United States dates back to 1840’s? The arrival in the country of large numbers of Irish immigrants, following the disastrous potato famine in Ireland, helped establish the feast in America. Their celebrations of All Saints’ and All Souls’ Days still preserved many of the ancient rites of Samhain. For example, the carving of pumpkins comes from the Irish legend of Jack, a man so evil that when he died he was rejected by both heaven and hell and was condemned to roam the countryside with nothing but a glowing turnip for a head.

Read more about Halloween in U.S. History in Context.

Halloween Legends

A Halloween pumpkin.

Image via Wikipedia

Did you ever wonder why Americans carve pumpkins for Halloween? About 2,000 years ago, an Irish legend developed about a ghost who was forced to wander the earth while holding a lantern. To scare him away, the Irish carved turnips and potatoes and put candles inside them at night. When the Irish brought this tradition to America, they started carving pumpkins instead!

According to the Irish legend, what was the name of the ghost who roamed the earth?

Find the answer and learn more about this legend : Parks, Wynn. “The Head of the Dead: Celtic Origins of the Jack-o’-Lantern.” World & I. Nov. 1994: 270-279. SIRS Renaissance. Web. 27 Sep 2010.

Monthly Events, Holidays & Rememberances – October

  • Columbus Day (PDF)
    Source: Embassy of the United States of America
    There is still controversy over who “discovered” America, but certainly over 500 years ago Christopher Columbus undertook a voyage that marked modern Europe’s engagement with the American continents. This site discusses that historic voyage and the American holiday that commemorates it.

  • Introduction to the United Nations
    Source: United Nations
    “The United Nations officially came into existence on 24 October 1945, when the UN Charter had been ratified by a majority of the original 51 Member States. The day is now celebrated each year around the world as United Nations Day.” (UNITED NATIONS) Read an introduction to the United Nations.

  • Happy Halloween
    Source: Public Broadcasting Service (PBS)
    PBS Kids has gathered the best of their Halloween activities and games. Make Halloween masks, practice face painting, build an alien and more.