With Halloween fast approaching here's a little history on the origin of the Jack O'Lantern! the tradition originated in Ireland with the use of turnips instead of pumpkins.
The story goes, many centuries ago in Ireland the lived a crafty man known as "Stingy Jack". Jack was well known in the surrounding area as an untrustworthy con-man. One night satan overheard the story's of old Jack and decided to see for himself if the man lived up to the reputation. When Satan finally tracked down Jack he was inebriated as usual, Satan takes a seat next to Jack at the bar and upon realizing who was sat next to him Jack managed to convince Satan to have a few drinks with him before his soul is claimed! After a few drinks, Jack convinces Satan to metamorphose into a coin to pay for the next round, Satan fulfills Jack's request but instead of handing the coin to the bartender Jack slips the coin into his pocket alongside a crucifix, this stops Satan from being able to change back into his normal form. Jack agrees to free Satan on the basis that Satan will leave Jack in peace for 10 Years, Satan agrees.
Ten years later Satan reappears to finally fetch Jack's soul, Jack just has one request, he asks Satan to climb a tree to fetch an apple for his last meal before spending the rest of eternity in hell, Satan again fulfills Jack's request, but as soon as Satan climbs a few branches up Jack covers the ground around the tree in crucifix's which again halts Satan in his tracks, this time Jack requests that in order to free Satan he must agree to never claim Jacks soul into the depths of hell, Satan again agree's.
After many more years of mischief, Jack finally passes away but upon arriving at the gates of Heaven St. Peter refuses entry for Jack for all of his years of evil, Jack then falls to his knees at the gates of hell and pleads for entry, Satan decides to honor his original agreement and refuses entry to Jack. To warn others, he gave Jack a lit ember. Jack is now doomed to roam for eternity carrying his ember inside a hollowed turnip to light his way.
For centuries families in Ireland would hang Jack O'Lantern's outside their house in autumn to ward off the troublesome spirit of "Stingy Jack".
If you find yourself crafting some Jack O'Lantern's why not sit them around a few Garden Fireballs to really set the mood, and for inspiration why not head down to our Country Market showroom to see our lovely pumpkin display.