Thanksgiving Maskers


15 Responses to “Thanksgiving Maskers”

  1. PaulR says:

    At least the Newfoundlander/Labradorians are still mummering.

  2. bjacques says:

    Those costumes were pretty topical–Spanish-American War, Boer War–and I wonder if anyone went as General Funston administering the “water cure?”

  3. Dominic says:

    “Mummering”, or “jannying” as it is known locally (, is still practiced to a limited, and somewhat ironic, extent in the outports of Newfoundland. This is done more often at Xmas than Thanksgiving and involves the adults (kids rarely do this these days) cross-dressing in old clothes, putting on masks and going from house to house to “get their Christmas”…meaning that they will get drinks and food at each house they visit.
    It’s basically a mobile party and an excuse to get good and drunk over the Xmas holidays, but there’s also often some live music, dancing, storytelling and recitation involved, making it a last vestige of a very old way of life in the outports.
    That being said, one of my most bizarre memories is of spending a week one night snowbound in a bumhole town in Newfoundland while a recently returned military man of questionable orientation in his mother’s dress took it in turns to attempt to molest both myself and my wife. Egad, I love living in the city.

  4. Ignatz says:

    Here’s an article about Thanksgiving maskers/ Ragamuffins in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. The practice appears to have survived into the 1960s.

  5. braininavat says:

    A while back I was looking at a book of photos of life in tiny British Columbia mining towns circa 1900 – 1920 and was amazed at the number of photos of masquerade parties – it seemed like a favorite recreational activity.

  6. Anonymous says:

    proto underwear perverts?

  7. thewomanyoustole says:

    Those costumes are scarier than any I’ve seen on Halloween. So so creepy.

  8. thewomanyoustole says:

    Holy crap that was frightening. I’ll have to remember that for next Halloween.

  9. Xeni Jardin says:

    @arkizzle, a SCARE THE SHIT OUT OF YOU warning on the turnip next time PLEASE

  10. ackpht says:

    Seems in those days, if didn’t have a hat, you weren’t fully dressed. Dirt roads, no cars- it must have been relatively quiet compared to the distant-but-perpetual roar of engines we have today.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Trash Humpers!

  12. InsertFingerHere says:

    A bi-racial couple happily walking arm-in-arm down the street. What could be scarier than that in 1915 ?
    Gives me chills.

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