Brief History of Halloween

Halloween’s origins starts with Samhain a Celtic harvest festival which celebrated the end of the harvest and also marked the beginning of the dark cold months to come.  They Celtics believed that on Samhain, the barrier between the living and the dead was the thinnest and allow for communication and many believed the ghost of the dead could return to the living world on this night.  So on this night, often the Druid priest of the celtic tradition would light bonfires and the Celtics would dress in costumes, often of animals to celebrate.

Over the years, the ancient traditions morphed into what we know as Halloween.  initially, the Pope had designated November 1st as all saints day, and Samhain became “All Hallow’s Eve” and many of the original customs stayed intact in the celtic area and slowly spread across England, and even parts of Europe.

Colonial America also experience a version of Halloween. But as the United State grew and immigrants from Ireland (especially during the potato famine) immigrated, they brought a more define variant of the traditions. and the modern version of “American” Halloween began to form.

Parties and festivals where often adults would dress and socialize became the standard, with the idea of children and treats coming a bit later.  The interesting fact is that while Halloween is a far stretch from the original Samhain, many of the same views are held by most americans.

If asked, most would put Halloween on the top of their list of days where the dead could communicate or even manifest.  While we make no claims that this is true, it is quite interesting that humanity in general has thought that October 31st has been a day where the barrier between the living and the dead is the thinnest, well before written history, and as documented well before sixth century.

We here at etpp hope you have a wonderful and safe Halloween and hope to see you at hallowcon!