As an admirer and historian of Halloween, I’ve been thinking about what Halloween means to me. I spend every waking moment reading, watching and exploring Halloween and it’s rich, but confusing history. We do know one thing, most historians can not pinpoint where or when Halloween started. As for me, I have been a Halloween fanatic for as long as I can remember. Halloween means plenty of things to me, the changing of the leaves, the smells that Fall brings to the east coast and of course those grey cloudy days. I can’t leave out, watching horror movies, listening to legends and tales of all the paranormal; the list can go on and on and it all fits into my Halloween.
This all got me thinking and I have been reading a heck of a lot about Halloween. It is one diverse, melting pot of a holiday that brings the community of fellow Halloween lovers together every October. Everyone from all over has different traditions, memories and meaning of what Halloween is to them. As much as I have been a student of its history, a fan of its haunted houses, spectator of its movies, and a listener of anyone and everything about the holiday; it’s still confusing to pinpoint all of Halloween’s history and origins in America.
I wanted to write this to get a discussion going about the origins and history of this holiday we all celebrate and obsess over all year long. I found these outstanding books that shed some light on the subject, even though there are plenty more, that I could have listed. I most certainly will put together a future post of great books and movies that explain Halloween, but for now if you haven’t read these, check them out.
- Halloween: An American Holiday, An American History: By Lesley Bannatyne
- Trick or Treat: A History of Halloween: By Lisa Morton
- The Halloween Encyclopedia: By Lisa Morton
If you hate to read, which I did at one point check out some very cool videos the History Channel puts together. I will give the link below, their special which airs every Halloween is “The Haunted History of Halloween” put out in 1997.
There is so much information out there, I just felt the need to share some of what I found and my thoughts about the greatest holiday, in my opinion. I want to build my “nightmare” into a 365 day a year experience, that everyone can learn and grow from, to make this holiday into something people can share all year long. The right information needs to be out there, so people understand the meaning and people’s obsession with this holiday, I hope this is a start.
My dream is to one day have a place of my own. To build a museum dedicated to Halloween in a historic building that also can be converted to a haunted house in October, A convention area in the off season and of course a studio to hold my podcast.