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Calendar for October 31st, 2011

Halloween (All Hallows' Eve)

Halloween (October 31) originated with the ancient Celts, who celebrated the new year on November 1. They believed that the souls of the dead returned to Earth the night before (Samhain). In later years, the Irish used hollowed-out, candlelit turnips, carved with a demon's face to frighten away the spirits. When Irish immigrants in the 1840s found few turnips in the United States, they used the more plentiful pumpkins instead. See more about Halloween traditions with our History of Carving Pumpkins video.

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