Just the other day [October 8th] I was reading that it was the anniversary of the Chicago fire. It happened in 1871 and caused $200 million dollars in damage [3 billion dollars in present dollars]. It made me think of how this event became a children’s song. We all know it, we’ve all sung it. It goes “one dark night, when we were all in bed old Mother O’Leary left a lantern in the shed, when a cow kicked it over we winked our eye and said it’s gonna be a hot night in the old town tonight FIRE! FIRE! FIRE!”. As a child we don’t know that we are singing about a huge catastrophe. I was going to now let you know that Ring around the rosey was about the black plague, but after further investigation I found that to be untrue. It occurred to me how menacing our “children’s” stories and songs really are. Everything from the afore mentioned song to The Wizard of Oz, Harry Potter and The Brothers Grimm. They were real masters. Look at Hansel and Gretel, whose step mother plans to get rid of them, then they end up as the planned entree at a witch’s house. Or the real story of Cinderella, whose step-sisters cut their toes off to fit into the Prince’s shoe. You do have to admit they all make great stories and we have them all. Whether you want to read the “true” children’s stories, or read what really happened the night of the Chicago fire come to the Library. Don’t forget to take our survey.
Posted by Estel