Everything for Your Home's
Beauty, Comfort & Convenience 384-2123
704 Jamestown St, Columbia
Dr. Ronald P. Rogers
Support for your body's natural healing capabilities
Click here for details
Click here for information
Real Estate & Auction Co.
Duo County Telecom
Now Available Through
Your Cable Service!
GUN & PAWN
What's Going On
Info about the
Janice Holt Giles
and Henry Giles Society
Columbia Gas Dept.
GAS LEAK or GAS SMELL
24 hrs/ 365 days
270-384-2006 or 9-1-1
Call before you dig
Directory of Churches
phone numbers and more
for churches in Adair County
Find Great Stuff in
Antiques, Help Wanted,
Autos, Real Estate,
Legal Notices, More...
Celebrating Hallowe'en at the Hancock Hotel, 1902
JIM admits "I had a lot of fun putting this together." And readers will, too, when they see how, in his usual History Mystery Detective fashion, he follows through on the prognostications found in the cutting of the cake and finds some surprising outcomes. - CM
Click on headline for complete Halloween History Mystery and prophecies, facts & fallacies Fact Checker Jim uncovered in the dusty annal of the Adair County News
Several couples - "a majority of the young people of the community" - celebrated Hallowe'en in style in Columbia in 1902. On that long ago All Saints' Eve (it conveniently fell on a Friday that year), they began streaming out Burkesville street, arriving at the Hancock Hotel at or around 9 p.m., the agreed-upon meeting time. Soon "The parlors were alive with happy voices, the music the latest and much enjoyed."
As the witching hour neared, the celebrants filed two by two into the spacious dining room of the Hancock, where everyone heartily partook of a multi-course meal of delicacies, a midnight gustatory delight served by three phantoms whose "ghost-like appearances had no effect on the appetites."
To cover the cost of the late-night repast and the meeting place - a total of about twenty-five dollars - each young man paid a "tax" according the amount of jewelry displayed by the young woman he escorted. "There were rubies and diamonds on exhibition and the boys paid from one dollar to one-seventy-five each."
One postprandial feature, the cutting of a cake into which a number of items had been baked, drew considerable interest and elicited considerable amusement. "Miss Lorena Pile got the ring, Miss Sallie Rey Marcum the money, [and] Sam Nat Hancock the button. The ring indicates that winner will marry before the next Hallowe'en, the money will bring a wealthy husband, and the drawer of the button is to die an old bachelor."
About two a.m., November 1st, the crowd began to disperse to their respective abodes, after having spent "a most delightful time" in innocent revelry.
An afterword: The cake proved quite unreliable in prognosticating the future. Miss Lorena Pile, who served for years as the Columbia telephone operator and later ran a millinery shop in Elizabethtown, didn't marry until after America entered the Great War, two or three years before she turned 40. Miss Sallie Rey Marcum never walked the aisle to Mendelssohn's march, and Sam Nat Hancock thwarted the cake-dictum destiny of singledom by taking unto himself in 1904 Miss Margaret Robertson as his helpmeet, and he remained steadfastly by her side until death did them part almost three decades later.
(Based in the main on an article found in the November 5, 1902 Adair County News.)
This story was posted on 2016-10-30 05:23:14
Printable: this page is now automatically formatted for printing.
Have comments or corrections for this story? Use our contact form and let us know.
To sponsor news and features on ColumbiaMagazine, please use our contact form.
More articles from topic Jim: History:
JIM: Dr. Gaither and the goose question
Adair County's mysterious death, 1916
Faded Glory: The Butler residence, Greensburg Street
JIM: Digest of Adair County News of September 6, 1916
JIM: History found in old newspaper used to wrap 22 revolver
JIM: Entertaining tales of Which County?
JIM:...but it spent the night at a Holiday Inn Express!
Garnett residence newsworthy 100 years ago
JIM: 100 years ago this week
JIM - The 71st wedding anniversary of my parents
View even more articles in topic Jim: History
Click for Info
Bank of Columbia
If You're Thinking of Selling,
Let Us Do the Yelling
Principal Broker & Auctioneer
Burton Real Estate
& Auction Service
Call Us For Appraisals
Click for Listings
On This Site
or Click Here
The Best of
Local Stories of
The Greatest Generation
Order Book or e-Book
See who's celebrating
Birthdays and Anniversaries
Special Events List
ColumbiaMagazine.com content is available as an RSS/XML feed for your RSS reader or other news aggregator.
Contact us: Columbia Magazine and columbiamagazine.com are published by D'Zine, Ltd., PO Box 906, Columbia, KY 42728.