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Facts Friday

This week's Facts Friday Kim shares a fact from US Today.

Jack o'lanterns were not originally made from pumpkins and comes from the Irish legend of Stingy Jack.


The Legend from this article by By Meghan Tankersley


Legend has it that Stingy Jack invited the devil to have a drink with him, but Jack didn't want to pay for the drink, so he convinced the devil to turn himself into a coin. Instead of buying the drink, he pocketed the coin and kept it close to a silver cross in his house, preventing the devil from taking shape again.


He promised to let the devil go as long as he would leave Jack alone for a year – and that if Jack died, the devil wouldn't claim his soul.

After a year, Jack tricked the devil again to leave him alone and not claim his soul. When Jack died, God didn't want such a conniving person in heaven and the devil, true to his word, would not allow him into hell.


Jack was sent off into the night with only a burning coal to light his path. He placed the coal inside a carved-out turnip and has been roaming the earth ever since.

People in Ireland and Scotland began creating their own creations of Jack's lanterns out of turnips, beets and potatoes. The tradition traveled to the United States along with the immigrants and people began to use pumpkins, native to North America, for the lanterns instead.



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