The history of the Jack O lantern
By: Joseph Kachur
Pumpkin carving is a tradition that was shared with the world from Ireland a long time ago. In Ireland there was a legend of an evil spirit that was named Jack. When the people of Ireland would carve faces into a turnip, or a potato it was said to scare away the spirit of Jack. The reason the Irish people had started this tradition is because it is said that a man named Jack was too mean to get to heaven because he would play tricks on the devil. After Jack’s passing, heaven did not want his soul, so he was forced to walk the earth for eternity. Jack’s spirit was found one week after his passing carrying a turnip to light his way.
After the legend of the spirit people decided that on Halloween, they would carve turnips and potatoes to guide or scare Jack’s spirit away. After some time when the tradition of carving turnips and potatoes had gotten out to the rest of the world, some people started to change it to fit their culture better. Take America for example, when Celtic Americans brought their root vegetable carving tradition with them in the 19th and early 20th century. When the Americans, hearing of the Irish tradition of carving turnips and potatoes. The Americans decided to carve a pumpkin instead.
Americans had started to put more fun, warm, or welcoming pictures on their pumpkins. When interviewed Matthias Ripley said that every year he carves a pumpkin, and he tries to make it something that people can laugh at. When Brayden Wesner, interviewed he said, that he Likes to carve more of a scary, or festive look into his pumpkins every year. On the other hand, Brayden Wesner, stated that his favorite part of carving a pumpkin was putting on the final details.
Some of the best pumpkin carvings to try this Halloween may be something you believe in, or a character from a cartoon or movie. It could also be something that you love like a reference to your favorite sport or person. Every Halloween different pictures are carved onto a pumpkin every year, so some people may think theirs must be different and have their own unique design to make their pumpkin stand out amongst the rest this year.