Every Oct. 31, children dress in a variety of popular costumes and go door-to-door collecting candy. Here's where that Halloween tradition, and several others, came from:

  • Haunted Houses are based on Victorian England's "Scare Manors," places where children who didn't mine enough coal were sent as punishment
  • Giving children candy at the door began when early American settlers realized it was a lot easier than talking to kids about the meaning of death
  • Much like people today, pre-Christian pagans would throw toilet parchment all over the tree outside their mean alchemy teacher's house.
  • Jack-o'-lanterns first debuted in 1981 as part of a marketing scheme to promote Monsanto's invention of the pumpkin
  • The song "Monster Mash" borrows its melody from a medieval Gregorian All Saints' Day chant entitled "I Worketh In The Abbey Into The Darkness One Night (O Monster Of Salvation)"
  • Bobbing for apples was originated at a Halloween party by a group of people who were patronizing an armless friend
  • In 1928, Nathaniel Darder of Worcester was the first guy to give out treats in a strategically loosened bathrobe
  • According to modern-day Wiccans, most of today's Halloween traditions are actually blah, blah, blah