Cape Breton's Magazine

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Page 21 - A Ceilidh at Malcolm Campbell's

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1974/10/1 (4550 reads)
 

A Ceilidh at Malcolm Campbells Malcolm Campbell today and at his family farm at Woodbine when that place was an ac? tive farm commimity. Pictured with Malcolm are his uncle Peter Campbell, his mother Jessie, voung John Archie Maclnnes and Malcolm's sister Helen (Mrs. Helen_Howatt). The horses name was Lynn and the dog was Pal. Malcolm Campbell: Did you ever hear any stories of this one had a charm for taking the milk from her neighbor's cow? Man, you haven't lived. Say now Sadie there had the charm and our neighbor had a cow down the roadj maybe two or three cows and we would have one. But our cow would be producing more milk than all these three be? cause we'd be getting the milk from him. And apparently the old women who had this charm • I never heard tell of a man being able to do it • it was always women that were supposed to be witches or something • they would go May Day • first day of May- borrow something, and whatever you do you weren't supposed to loan them anything be? cause then they would surely take the virtue from your land and from your cattle. They would take the good from your land and from you. She would get the benefit of whatever you were doing. Particularly your cattle. And they used to tie a red string on the cow's tail to combat this, so that they couldn*t take this from you. There was a family • two or three old women over at Margaree • I often heard ray mother talk? ing about it • and the boys would be going just for hellery and cutting this thing off. And every time they'd do it the next time you'd come the cow would have the red string on again. But these women were supposed to be witches themselves. I remember them telling this story about this one: They sent her to the store • to the market • with butter and the merchant wouldn't take it, said she had more than her own and he wouldn't take it from her. They had another rhyme • there was this fellow was taking her butter on horseback, and he had his own. And he had a bag sltmg across his sad? dle, if he had a saddle. And as he was going along her package of butter was getting heavier and heavier and he had to put stones in the other bag to counteract the weight of it. Helen Howatt: They claim that these people who were supposed to have the witchcraft, one of them in particular she went to this house on the first day of May to borrow and she asked for various things and they said they didn't have it. And she was so chagrined on her way out she picked up a handful of earth off their farm and she went with it. She was determined she was going to have something. Hugh MacKinnon: I only seen one thing....Donald John MacMullen's Bonnie L., you know the horse, he was stretched out behind the barn and Donald John came after my father and of course I had to go. And they were having confessions in the house • there was a lot of old women there • and he told Donald John, "Wait till some of them leave the house till I get down with the horse." "Ah, you needn't, she's dead." Well, my fa? ther went down, he went around the horse two or three times, he looked at him • the horse jumped up to his feet, start eating hay. For two days he wouldn't move. And old Archie Maclnnes the same thing, when I went with my grandmother. But she went on Cape Breton's Magazine/21
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