The History of Spooky Season


(Andrew Galster/LHS Peak Press)

A plastic pumpkin basket sits atop horror-themed books in the LHS Library.

Once a year millions of people walk around in creepy masks and outfits to beg for candy by repeating the same weird tune at the front door of their neighbors’ homes. We go to haunted parties and events just to see the interesting costumes that people come up with. People also carve pumpkins and hang creepy decorations from our homes for one night of sweet candies and jump scares. Have you ever wondered why we do all this? What type of things have gone on in the past to create such a weird and almost satanic holiday? Everything begins with a 2,000-year-old tradition called Samhain.


Back in the 1800’s, it was a common belief that on the 31 of October, the veil between Earth and the “another world” was at its most thin. Ghosts and spirits would travel into our world and do dastardly deeds. People would dress up in creepy masks and costumes and carve pumpkins to ward off the stray spirits that happened to make their way to Earth. People believed that if they were able to live the night without getting overrun by spirits, they would have a good harvest the next year.


Things started to change when All Saints’ Day was designated to November 1, the day after Samhain. Instead of wearing scary masks and warding off evil spirits, Christians dedicated the day after Samhain to honor their dead. The term All Hallows’ Eve came from the Christian advent, meaning “All Saints’ Day’s eve (the day before). This is still true today, with November 1st remaining All Saints’ Day.


The history of Halloween is almost as old as the country it originated in– Ireland. Although Ireland has lost many of the customs that came with the tradition over time, Ireland has become the ultimate Halloween location. They have giant parades with huge spine-tingling characters looking down on all the people who came to watch in gleeful horror. Every aspect of the wicked hollow day is done with care and precision to make the night as fun, and as memorable as possible. 


When asked, people didn’t really know much about the loved festivities. How the fun filled night with candy and costumes came from a holiday full of saints, and fortune. Jordan Toller, a Junior at Liberty High School, stated that “[She] know[s] [that] people used to believe ghost[s] and goblins came out at night.”  The traditions that once were held as import activities for the year round, is now the best part of the year– Halloween.