When Halloween Was So Dangerous It Was Nearly Banned

Did you know that Halloween was once so dangerous that some cities considered banning it?

In the Gilded Age, Halloween was all tricks and no treats. The ghoulish holiday was free of candy and costumes and full of pranks, vandalism, and even violence. When immigrants from Scotland and Ireland brought their Halloween traditions to the United States in the middle of the 1800s, they celebrated as they did back in their homelands—not with costumed children going door-to-door for sweets but by pulling pranks. Read all about some of the crazy pranks–sometimes with fatal consequences–in the October edition of The Throwback, my e-mail newsletter.

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