Tip the Can

From the Sears Catalog

From the Sears Catalog

Millions of people consider Halloween to be one of the high holy days of the year, and not just the kids who collect candy in the neighborhood. Dressing up  in costumes hasn’t interested me for years, but that doesn’t stop the Halloween industry.

In the thirties the industry hadn’t gotten off the ground, and from Louie’s stories there wasn’t much need for buying costumes. The neighborhood kids figured out everything they needed to do. A couple of months ago Louie had another letter about his Halloween pranks. This one tops the windmill story.

What fun it would have been to be a fly on the wall when Bob came home that night. There’d be no hiding what fun took place earlier that evening.

Grandpa Guy Havelick



Louie writes:

Back in the “Good old days” when we didn’t have indoor plumbing we utilized the old reliable “outhouse”

These were to the rear of each home, usually two seater, in case you liked company I guess.

Each also usually had a Sears and Roebuck catalog available for convienuant (sp?) use, whatever. Some people have a saying, one day at a time – this was one page at a time.

On halloween night the mean game of the local neighbor was to play “Tip-the-can” or tip over the outhouse.

Of course this little game did not go over very well with the owners of the little houses.

Pa Selig decided he was going to get even with the bad boys of the neighborhood – he moved the toilet three feet towards his house so the back (where we usually pushed the toilet over from had a little exposure downwards).

The big night came and we all gathered for some of the halloween activities. When we got to the Seligs home, sure enough the first kid to get to the back of the outhouse disappeared quite suddenly.

We gave the stinking little rascal as little help as we could as we had a hard time getting close enough to give him any.

Funny part of all this is that the one that sank into the much was Bob Selig. Yep, the old mans son. Kind of backfired in a way eh?

Yes it did slow down our “Tip-the-can” episodes.

Nobody hung out with Bob for a while. seems like he had a funny odor even after a bath.

Louie Letter 018

Photo attribution: “Sears catalogue 1935, socks” by genibee is licensed under CC BY 2.0