Thursday, October 11, 2012

Trick or Treat--1950's

Jack-o-lantern smiling bright,
Smiling bright, smiling bright, 
Witches flying in the night, 
It is Halloween! 

Ghosts and goblins, cats and bats,
Cats and bats, cats and bats. 
Witches with their funny hats, 
It is Halloween!

Are we there yet?  I have to chuckle when I think of that commercial.  It reminds me so much of me, only that wasn't the question I was asking.  No, I was harassing  my mom with, "Is it time yet?"  We'd already had our dinner, and she'd be at the sink doing the dishes.   I'd ask that question over and over again, and surprisingly, for that one night, she didn't get agitated. "No, not yet.  Some people are still having their dinner, and you don't want to interrupt them.  Besides, it's not dark enough yet." Imagine that. There was once a Halloween where children couldn't go out until it was dark.

Halloween night in the 1950's.  Hard to imagine in this day and age that we couldn't go out until it was dark, and we were permitted to go without supervision. We lived in a much safer world! We worked hard at carving our pumpkins, lit them with candles, set them out to our front porches, and knew that no one was going to come around and smash them. We didn't have to worry about razor blades in apples or needles in our candy bars.  It was so safe back then that as long as we stayed in the neighborhood, we didn't even have a curfew. 

Houses were close together in our 'cookie cutter' neighborhood, and we went from one house to another for blocks on end.Houses were decorated, and no one turned us away. There were no delinquents about to rob our bags, and we even made drop offs at home when the loot got too heavy. Treats  consisted of apples, homemade cookies, tootsie rolls, candy apples, lots of suckers, pennies, (which meant something back then), mellow cream pumpkins (tasted like candy corn), jelly pumpkins, Sugar Daddy Pops. Salt Water Taffy, Neccos, and an occasional Mars or Hershey bar. There  was oh, so much more, but these are the ones I remember the most. 

Children today may have their Halloween fun, but it is indeed unfortunate that they cannot celebrate with as much freedom as we once did.  No longer can a child wait until after dark.  It's not safe out there anymore.  And, to go it alone?  No way.  Too much danger in those streets.  Children now go out immediately after school, with their parent, and usually only 'trick or treat' in  the stores.  I've not bought candy in years, because I know that no one will come. For the past 15 years, the only youth to come ringing my bell was a group of rowdy teenagers who grabbed handfuls of candy, then ran away. 

This year I will probably by a bag or two.  There 'are' some children in my building, but they, like everyone else will probably be snug in their homes by the time I get home from work. After all, it falls on one of my late nights, and children just can't go out 'trick or treating' at night anymore. How sad that the world has changed so!


  1. Now, that is scary. I love the whole trick or treating thing for the way I get a chance to meet my neighbors. Here in my little Fort Worth suburb, we're tucked away from the rest of the world by, of all things, a stand of trees in front of the interstate. The children and teens who come through here are local. My husband and I both dress up... well, he always wears his "Steve Martin" arrow through his head costume, yes, that's it - just the arrow thing (the 70's were very good to him) and I try something witchy. I enjoy watching the children grow up and learning what's "hot" in Halloween fashion every year. Trick or treating ends when we turn off the lights. Gee, I think I'll copy this and use it as a post. Sorry to ramble on... I guess I'm just an old party girl... Happy (almost) Halloween!

  2. I will always remember the excitement of the first time I went out trick or treating on Halloween. It must have been around 1961 or 62 when I was still a preschooler. The darkness, the swirling dry leaves, the thrill of knocking on strangers' doors!

  3. This post brought back so many good memories. I loved going from neighbor to neighbor with them exclaiming over my costumes and seeing other children's too. It is VERY sad that Halloween isn't the neighborly safe haven for trick or treater's now. Somthething's just have to live on in memory.

  4. Another example of how the world has changed.

    But you have your memories!

    Btw, I got a "Pet Ghost" to send to my Granddaughter who is away at college... And her Birthday is next week. :-) Thank you for the cute idea!