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Posts from the ‘conjure’ Category

Graveyard dirt: be careful how you use it

Now, one should always, always, always be hesitant on working with graveyard dirt. Whether you’re petitioning Grandmaw or the sheriff who passed two years ago, you gotta be on your toes about this work. When you go to buy the dirt you need to feel the place. Cause you ain’t never alone in the graveyard. Never. – Graveyard Dirt in Appalachian Hoodoo

In conjure, graveyard dirt is used for causing enemies to get sick, luck in gambling, protection, and making goofer dust. It’s harder to get graveyard dirt these days because there are fewer and fewer family graveyards. Needless to say, you can’t (or shouldn’t) wander into a city or a private cemetery with a trowel and throw a few scoops of dirt of a bucket. And, during the sad time when you’re attending a burial ceremony, people will look askance if you put a handful of the turned soil into your pocket rather than throwing it on your beloved’s coffin.

You can buy graveyard dirt, but it might be fake. It might be herbs masquerading as dirt or it might be a scoop of dirt out of somebody’s backyard. Even if the stuff you can buy online is real, you don’t know where it came from. What you don’t want, is dirt collected from the grave of a criminal, a crazy person, or dirt that wasn’t paid for by leaving behind whiskey or coins. If you collect the graveyard dirt from the grave of an ancestor you know, the point is: you know them, what they’re like, and how they might help with a charm or spell.

According to Conjure Work (whose product is shown in the photo), “It’s important to note that the grave was not disrespected or in any way desecrated. The gravesite didn’t actually look any different after removing the dirt than it did before. The desecration of a grave is completely unacceptable and would have the opposite effect of the work that is intended by a respectful “barter” with the Spirit of the person.”

  • If somebody died in a bad way, the dirt from their grave can be mixed with sulphur, pins, needles, and nails in a bottle and buried in a place where your enemy walks.
  • If you have a powerful ancestor, dirt from their grave can be mixed with red pepper and salt and sprinkled around your front door to protect the household.
  • If you can get ahold of dirt from the grave of somebody who loved you, mix it with vandal root (powdered) and sprinkle or toss if (without getting caught) on the person you love and ask the spirits to help them see you as a potential lover.

I found countless uses while doing the research for the three novels in my Florida Folk Magic series. I don’t provide specific recipes because I don’t want people using my novels, which are fiction (of course) as a source for spells.

Malcolm

Malcolm R. Campbell is the author of “Conjure Woman’s Cat,” “Eulalie and Washerwoman,” and “Lena.” You can save on the Kindle editions by buying the three-in-one set shown here.

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‘Eulalie and Washerwoman’ and ‘Lena’ now available in hardcover

Thomas-Jacob Publishing has just released the hardcover editions of Eulalie and Washerwoman and Lena. The first book in the Florida Folk Magic Series, Conjure Woman’s Cat, was released in hardcover last month. The books are also available in e-book, paperback, and audiobook editions.  All e-book editions are also available together in one e-book volume.

Bookstand and hoodoo supplies not included!

Enjoy the stories.

Malcolm

New ‘Conjure Woman’s Cat’ Hardcover Edition

Thomas-Jacob Publishing has released a hardcover edition of Conjure Woman’s Cat by Malcolm R. Campbell. Also available in paperback, e-book, and audiobook, the story set in the Florida Panhandle in 1954 follows the efforts of a conjure woman to find justice after her granddaughter is assaulted in a small town. The novel’s sequels, Eulalie and Washerwoman and Lena will also be released in hardcover in the coming months.

Copies are already available at Amazon.com and Barnesandnoble.com and can be obtained by your nearest indie bookstore via their Ingram catalogue.

“I dearly loved Eulalie and Willie, I could easily have been friends with them both. The more I read the name Eulalie the more I adored it. It has a beautiful rhythm and made me smile every time I read it. Eulalie was a wise woman and deserved the respect she was given. Kudos to Malcolm R. Campbell for a story well told.” from Big Al’s Books and Pals

“Listeners will marvel at the magical realism in this story and benefit from the helpful glossary of the charming local dialect.” S.G.B. © AudioFile 2016

“For me to truly love a book, it needs the following: great plot with something to get fired up about, intelligent, engaging storytelling, well-defined characters, at least one of whom makes me wish I could conjure them into my life and my living room, and a deeply satisfying conclusion. Campbell’s work delivers beautifully on all of the above.

“The book is narrated by Lena, cat and spirit companion to Eulalie, Conjure Woman and human being extraordinaire. Eulalie (don’t you just love that name?) has an innate goodness that can’t be denied, but she’s no saint. She’s devout and dedicated to doing God’s work, and has a willingness to confront what others refuse to acknowledge. Her determination to set straight the injustices in her world, combined with her resilience and wisdom, made this reader fall in love with her.” – WordNerd on Amazon

“This was a delightful read, mostly because of the unique narrator … Eulalie’s cat Lena. I was taken into the heart of a world so foreign to my own, and ended up grateful for the glimpse. Poetic justice for inexcusable cruelties abounds but only because of Eulalie’s faith and intervention.

“More than simply characters in a fictional piece, I soon believed in their culture and social conventions. Most of us don’t believe in hoodoo and conjuring, but there was a time when those beliefs were much stronger. The novella took me back to that period. This book is magic.” L. Record on Amazon

Enjoy the book!

–Malcolm

Thomas-Jacob is a traditional publisher in Florida.

 

 

 

Conjure Herbs: Master of the Woods

Wikipedia photo

Master of the Woods (Asperula ordorata) is a strongly scented, 12-20-inch long herbaceous perennial typically referred to as woodruff, sweet woodruff, and wild baby’s breath that is often used as a ground cover. Its four-petal white blooms appear between April and May. It has been used in perfumes, teas, and potpourris.

According to Sunlight Gardens, the semi-evergreen is easy to grow in shady, moderately moist areas, is resistant to deer and is “great with Bellwort, Gingers, Lenten Rose, and acid-loving shrubs.”

Medical Uses

According to Web MD, “sweet woodruff contains ingredients that can help decrease swelling (inflammation) and kill germs.” Other uses include circulation problems, restlessness, nerve pain, urinary disorders, and blood purification. Botanical.com notes that the plant has been used as a medicine since the middle ages; “The fresh leaves, bruised and applied to cuts and wounds, were said to have a healing effect, and formerly a strong decoction of the fresh herb was used as a cordial and stomachic. It is also said to be useful for removing biliary obstructions of the liver.” (Medical information is presented here more or less for historical or traditional background without warranty of any kind.)

Conjure Uses

You can buy herbal packets online at curio suppliers such as Lucky Mojo.

According to catherine yronwode’s Hoodoo Herb and Root Magic–the primary source I used when writing my conjure novels–Master of the Woods is a “commanding and ruling herb.” This implies that uses, in or out of mojo bags, will include strength, protection, control over enemies, personal energy, and even getting a job.

Mama Starr uses master of the woods, Jezebel root, calamus, loveage, and lavender boiled and steeped in water and placed in a spray bottle while ironing clothes along with a prayer and a petition that your target (a spouse, for example) will behave (whatever that might mean to you). You can also gain the upper hand over an opponent by sprinkling master of the woods in an area where that person will walk.

Auntyflo says that “the herb has very strong power in commanding, most people carry it along for to get protection from various harms, additionally, it helps the owner get out of any trouble they may encounter in their day to day activities. When combined with gravel root, it helps the job seeker get that job they have always desired. On the other hand, sprinkling the herb over the masters allows you commanding powers over them when they cross it.”

Like many herbs, master of the woods can be used alone or in combination oils, water, minerals, and other herbs to provide a root doctor or hoodoo practioner with mastery over situations as well as opposing forces, including enemies and situations.

–Malcolm

Malcolm R. Campbell is the author of “Conjure Woman’s Cat” and other novels.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The audiobook edition of ‘Lena’ is now available

 

Holly Palance has done a wonderful job narrating this final novel in the Florida Folk Magic series. For those of you who like listening to a story, Holly will draw you into this one and you just might find yourself listening to the book in one sitting.

Description

When Police Chief Alton Gravely and Officer Carothers escalate the feud between “Torreya’s finest” and conjure woman Eulalie Jenkins by running her off the road into a North Florida swamp, the borrowed pickup truck is salvaged, but Eulalie is missing and presumed dead. Her cat, Lena, survives. Lena could provide an accurate account of the crime, but the county sheriff is unlikely to interview a pet. Lena doesn’t think Eulalie is dead, but the conjure woman’s family and friends don’t believe her.

Eulalie’s daughter, Adelaide, wants to stir things up, and the church deacon wants everyone to stay out of sight. There’s talk of an eyewitness, but either Adelaide made that up to worry the police or the witness is too scared to come forward.

When the feared black robes of the Klan attack the first-responder who believes the wreck might have been staged, Lena is the only one who can help him try to fight them off. After that, all hope seems lost, because if Eulalie is alive and finds her way back to Torreya, there are plenty of people waiting to kill her and make sure she stays dead.

Click on the cover to buy the book on Amazon. Click here to buy it directly from Audible.

–Malcolm

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hoodoo Herbs: Cloves

Most of us see them like this at the grocery,

If you’re a cook, you’ve probably used cloves with baked beans, fish, chicken, squash, and a variety of desserts including gingerbread and chocolate cake. Monica Bhide, in the Seattle Times, wrote that “As I began to bake, I would do combinations of cinnamon and cloves for more flavor. I also like to pickle olives, and a small bunch of cloves in the pickling juice adds a wonderful earthy dimension of flavor. When I began barbecuing, I found that cloves added to barbecue rubs or sauces added a very nice depth of flavor.”

They’re dried flower buds, bitter when raw, that can be used ground or whole in cooking, often paired with cinnamon and cardamom. They’re very pungent and aromatic.

Health

Medicinally, cloves have been used to treat stress, inflammations including arthritis, toothaches, and carminative. Healthline notes they contain fiber, manganese, calcium and vitamin E and are high in antioxidants.

Conjure

Curio companies like Lucky Mojo sell cloves in ready-to-use packets.

My primary source is Hoodoo Herb and Root magic by catherine yronwode. She says that you’ll find cloves (Caryophyllus aromaticus) in friendship, money, and prosperity spells. Plus, if you press hold cloves into a red candle and burn it, you can stop your enemies from slandering you or gossiping. Crapshooters carry red mojo bags with retired dice, five-finger grass, cinnamon, Irish moss, cloves, thyme, and Hoyt’s cologne.

You can make friendship bags, according to Herbmagic.com by placing seven cloves in small bags and wearing them around your neck. For protection/cleaning, add them to a floor wash or a cleansing bath.

 

 

Wikipedia graphic

This post makes no guarantees about the medical or conjure uses of cloves, but simply presents them as traditional information for those interested in hoodoo.

Malcolm

Florida Folk Magic Stories, a Kindle e-book, contains three novels and represents a savings over buying them separately.

 

 

 

 

Hoodoo herbs: Acacia

Wikipedia photo

This herb is also called “Cassie Flower” and “Gum Arabic” among other names. In her wonderful Hoodoo and Root Magic book, catherine yronwode warns against confusing Acacia with Cassia Sienna, Cassia Bark, or Quassia (bitter root). They are not the same. Acacia’s classification is Leguminosae (Mimosacaceae).

In her book, yronwode mentions the fact that today’s conjure workers tend to be less aware of the herbs they’re using because they aren’t growing them or finding them in the forest. This opens them up to fraud, especially from merchants who substitute herb XYZ and call it ABC. If you don’t know what the plant looks like in the wild, this is a danger.

Medical Uses

According to Web MD, As a medicine, acacia is taken by mouth for high cholesterol, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and weight loss. It is also used to remove toxins from the body and as a prebiotic to promote “good” bacteria in the intestine.

Acacia is applied to the skin inside the mouth for plaque and gum inflammation (gingivitis). It is also applied to the skin to decrease skin inflammation (redness).

Conjure

This plant symbolizes immortality and, as such, can be used to communicate with the dead. It can be mixed with holy water or burnt as an incense. You can also use it as an aid to psychic dreams and visions.. According to Occult1.com, Acacia can be “used as a Holy Oil for candles and your Altar. You will find this oil mentioned in the bible Exodus chapter 25. This is a very holy oil, used to anoint items that are used on the altar, used in the bath for Jinx Removing.rituals or at a time of prayer. You may also anoint your body at times of worship. • Due to the holy influences, Acacia is also known to be a protection oil, and one used for blessings, it should be worn on your wrists, palms and heart.”

Can you use it to summon the dead? Perhaps. Suppliers that mention this sell the plant as a curio only to avoid legal trouble. As a writer rather than a rootworker, I can’t really say what works and what doesn’t. I simply enjoy the research in support of the characters in my novels.

Malcolm

Malcolm R. Campbell is the author of the north Florida conjure novels “Conjure Woman’s Cat,” “Eulalie and Washerwoman,” and “Lena.”

 

Cruel Man of the Woods

Cruel Man of the Woods (Strobilomyces strobilaceus), also known as Old Man of the Woods, is a relatively rare mushroom found in deciduous woods and conifer forests in both the U.S. and U.K. It can be hard to spot since its color changes over time from white to black and can be obscured by dead leaves and underbrush. It appears between August and October. Purportedly, the younger mushrooms are edible, but some suggest that since they are rare and have little cooking value, they should be left alone. However, Morel Mushroom Hunting Club suggests they are best when dried for use in soups, sauces, and gravy.

As always in folk medicine and conjure, the names of plants often vary: some say that Cruel Man of the Woods is Poltandra alba.

Medically, extracts may inhibit tumor and sarcoma growth. Many other mushrooms are also cited in anti-cancer literature for similar purposes.

Wikipedia Photo

In hoodoo, the mushroom, which can be included whole in mojo bags or ground up into powders, is generally used to cause bad luck to others, control others, and to protect one’s property. Harm can come, it is believed when an enemy touches the mushroom–especially if they have harmed you.

ConjureDoctors.com says that if you “Take a piece of Cruel Man of the Woods, some Master Root, Licorice root and Devil’s Shoestring and wrap in red flannel and your influence over anyone will be unsurpassed.”

Some burn this for happiness and protection for themselves, but I find this problematic inasmuch as you could inhale it unless you isolated it on your property.

Alan Dundes, in Mother Wit from the Laughing Barrell includes the mushroom when he chastizes the uninformed by saying they “may be inclined so scoff at the red flanne; hoodoo-bag, containing such waifs and estrays as lodestone, steel filings, graveyard dirt, red pepper, gunpowder, anvil-dust, bluestone, nail trimmings and the thousand and one roots individualized as ‘Red Shanks,’ ‘Devil’s Shoe String,’ ‘Angels Turnip,’ ‘Purpose of the World,’ ‘Cruel Man of the Woods,’ and such like, but noe careful observer in the field can deny the fact that these various conjures in many cases actually work.”

For sale on eBay

I write about conjure in my fiction, but I’m superstitious enough not to doubt it when push comes to shove.

Malcolm

Malcolm R. Campbell is the author of “Conjure Woman’s Cat,” “Eulalie and Washerwoman,” and “Lena.” You can find all three of these novels combined in one e-book called “Florida Folk Magic Stories.”

 

 

 

 

 

How to tell if you’re an empath

“Being an Empath or having sensitivity to people, places, animals can be a good thing and a bad thing if you do not know how to control this ability.    Sometimes it leads to people having too many animals, having a relationship with a bully or abusive person because you “feel” you can change them, you can’t say ‘no’ because you don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings.   Places and things bother you while to others they think you’re just nuts—-well, you’re not.   You are an Empath.”

Source: SPIRITUAL INFORMATION: how to tell if you’re an empath

This post is two years old, but it continues to apply today as more and more people develop their psychic skills and find that they are becoming more sensitive to the emotions of other people. It can be good, but it’s not easy to control. This is an interesting discussion of the subject.

–Malcolm

Amazon Kindle cover.

Malcolm R. Campbell is the author of three “conjure and crime” novels that have been collected into one volume.

Harry Middleton Hyatt – folklore and hoodoo

Hyatt – Open Library photo

“Harry Middleton Hyatt was an Anglican minister who collected folklore as a hobby. Raised in Quincy, Illinois, Hyatt received his M.A. and D.D. at Kenyon College and Oxford University. He served as assistant rector at the Church of the Holy Spirit in New York City from 1951 to 1965. After his retirement in 1965, he returned to his home-town of Quincy, Illinois.

“As a folklorist, Hyatt began this work in his own home-town, and then proceeded onward to collect magical spells throughout the South. His two major works in this field were “Folklore From Adams County Illinois” (1935) and “Hoodoo – Conjuration – Witchcraft – Rootwork” (1970). ”

Source: Harry Middleton Hyatt

I’ve noticed that many people arrive on this blog by searching for Harry Middleton Hyatt. Rather than trying to write my own overview of his work, it’s more efficient to refer you to the information about him on the Lucky Mojo site.  In many ways, he helped bring information about conjure to the attention of many people who were unaware of it.

–Malcolm

Malcolm R. Campbell is the author of “Florida Folk Magic Stories,” three novels about conjure and crime set in 1950s Florida combined in one e-book.