Mother of the Harvest - 5x7 Print - Salem, Mass

Mother of the Harvest - 5x7 Print - Salem, Mass

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Based off of an old folktale told while I was visiting the Pioneer Village 1630 in Salem, Massachusetts. The tale depicted the tradition of making a corn husk doll out of the last stalk of corn and calling her the "Mother of the Harvest."

Here is the story (as best as I can remember it):

“A girl grew up in Wales where her grandfather practiced the old Pagan ways. Every harvest season, they would take the last stalk of corn and make a corn husk doll, which they'd call the mother of the harvest. They would bring the doll inside for the winter and in the spring they would bury it in the fields for the next harvest.

The family moved to Salem, leaving the grandfather behind in Wales, in 1630. At that time, similar practices were being performed for the harvest. She came to know a family who practiced, but the yeoman found out, killed the family and burned their house down. He proceeded to burn the fields.

Later, the girl gathered the ashes and what she could scavenge of the corn and put it in pots. She set the pots on the step of her house, but each morning they'd be knocked over. Then one day, she saw her. An old woman with long tangled gray hair, standing naked in the burnt field with skin sagging and peeling off of her body. The woman was staring at the girl, but no one else saw her.

After days of the old woman with peeling skin standing and staring, the girl realised she recognized her. So she took what was in the pots and made a small house out of it, which she took inside for the winter. She then buried it in the fields in the spring and the crop came back and she never saw the old woman again.

The yeoman had died shortly after burning the fields. Due to expansion, his grave had to be moved. But when they dug him up, they found his body peeled open and full of ash, with stalks of corn growing out of it.”

Printed on sturdy 8.0mil matte photo paper.

-measures 5x7"
-comes signed <3
-packaged in a protective plastic sleeve
-includes a reinforced cardboard backing