Exploring the collections of the Mercantile Library:

Celebrating a Full Moon on This Halloween
Of course, 2020 is a year to remember for many reasons. One of the more decidedly fun facts related to that is celestial: this is the first year in generations that the entire world will be bathed in a full moon (the second in the month of October, in fact) on Halloween. That hasn’t happened since 1944, and if it wasn’t the harbinger for the impending end of World War II the following year, it certainly could have been credited otherwise. We hope the new full moon occurrence is prophetically calling an end soon to the world pandemic --fingers crossed! There won’t be a Halloween full moon until yet another generation comes and goes in 2039, so get out your binoculars.
It’s interesting that so many Halloween full moon images show a witch riding across the sky in front of a full moon, but because it was so rare, the sorceress most likely had to make do (as in the above image), with just a sliver. Here is the delightful dust wrapper image for the Modern Library’s famous collection of ghost stories: one of the most important twentieth century anthologies, Great Tales of Terror and the Supernatural, with the famous trademark symbol of publisher Bennett Cerf’s Random House, shrouded in hauntings and mystery. The witch is up there flying past a yawning wedge of a mournful moon.
The charming and famous children’s story by Nora Unwin, Two Too Many, is a tale of two abandoned kittens who hitch a ride at Halloween on a witch’s broom, allowing the witch to win a race to the moon due to the fact that the glowing kittens’ eyes helped her navigate around rivals with “tail lights” of a feline nature. Depicted in this illustration is a full moon. The witch richly rewards the kittens with a warm home and bowls of cream for each--very lucky trick or treaters.
The Mercantile’s early books on the moon date from the beginnings of telescopic photography and are striking revelations to this day, wonders of printed and pioneering natural history. These early photos seemed to add to the mystery of the full moon-so near and so far by the telescopic lens—spurring scientists on to the greatest days of American exploration in 1968-9.
Not only is this a Halloween Blue Moon, but also red Mars appears by its side at the same time, very close to Earth. Hopefully clouds won’t block this spooky spectacular view. Happy Halloween to all of our members and friends! Attached are some other images of St. Louis Halloweens of bygone days—traditions, merriment, whimsy and fantasy—all done under the cold moonlit skies of years ago, as documented in the picture files of the St. Louis Globe-Democrat.
Physical therapists at Deaconess Hospital don their costumes during the Halloween Carnival, 1984. St. Louis Mercantile Library Globe-Democrat Collection
Mother helping her 3 1/2 year old daughter try on a witches costume, 1986. St. Louis Mercantile Library Globe-Democrat Collection
Raggedy Ann is ready to go trick-or-treating, 1981. St. Louis Mercantile Library Globe-Democrat Collection
A family's front yard graveyard decorated with homemade ghosts, ghouls and gravestones, 1975.
St. Louis Mercantile Library Globe-Democrat Collection
These kids try their skill at getting a bite of "Doughnut on a String," 1985. St. Louis Mercantile Library Globe-Democrat Collection
Children in their Halloween costumes visited residents of Madison County Nursing Home, 1981. St. Louis Mercantile Library Globe-Democrat Collection
The Crayolas from West St. Louis County helped color this Halloween happy at a party in the Central West End,1982. St. Louis Mercantile Library Globe-Democrat Collection
Bobbing for apples at the Hazelwood Community Center affair, 1985. St. Louis Mercantile Library Globe-Democrat Collection
This cute little clown gets a big hug from a friendly Halloween Witch, 1985. St. Louis Mercantile Library Globe-Democrat Collection 
Pumpkin Decorating contest at the Normandy Osteopathic Hospital North's dietary department, 1982. St. Louis Mercantile Library Globe-Democrat Collection
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