Turnips and Ghosts and Jack-O-Lanterns, and Contest OH MY

There’s more than a story here- get the clue, find the ghost-get a prize

Turnips and Ghosts and Jack-O-Lanterns, and Contest OH MY

Ayla Faullin

Ever wonder why carved pumpkins have earned the name, ‘jack o’ lantern’? It seems sort of out of place. The reason behind this nickname is an Irish legend of a man called Stingy Jack, who tricked the devil not once but twice. Here is the story of Stingy Jack.

Stingy Jack was a terrible drunkard, without an ounce of compassion or kindness towards anyone. After some time, the devil decided to take this wicked man into hell. He came up to earth and possessed the body of a dead man, awaiting Stingy Jack as he passed by. Stingy Jack, who did not want to die, invited the devil to drink with him. True to his name, Stingy Jack did not want to pay for the drinks afterward and challenged the devil to change into a silver coin to pay for it magically. So the devil did. Stingy Jack quickly put the devil in his pocket, alongside a silver crucifix, so the devil could not escape. He made the devil promised not to claim his soul for another decade, and the devil was forced to agree. 

After a decade, the devil came back, determined to get Jack. Jack requested that the devil go up a tree and get him an apple. When Satan did, Jack carved four crucifixes in the tree, trappin the devil once more. Once he had ensured the devil would never take him to hell, he let the demon go once more, satisfied he had outsmarted Satan again.

When Stingy Jack died, heaven would not let him enter because he was a deceitful, conniving drunkard. But when Stingy Jack headed toward hell, the devil also denied him, reminding him of the promise he had made while Jack was still alive. Stingy Jack made one final request, which the devil granted him. He asked for a lump of single coal from hell to light his path as he wandered the world in darkness. He put this coal into a carved-out turnip and is said to wander the earth to this day. 

So, as time has gone on, every time someone has seen a strange light out wandering, they have said, “It is Jack o’ the lantern.” That, eventually, became jack o’ lantern. People carved scary faces into the pumpkins, potatoes, or turnips to ward off Stingy Jack and other evil spirits. So, this All Hallows Eve, if you see the light wandering out in the woods, remember to carve out a pumpkin to ward off Stingy Jack. 


Find where the ghost is hiding before the ghost finds you!


The first sneaky ghost

That is waiting to scare

Is hiding underneath

A set of… 


If found, please return the ghost to the Journalism room (room 111) for your prize!