Place item was collected
Point of Discovery/Informant Bio
Jennilyn Tanner is my wife. She grew up in Tooele County in a new subdivision in a home that her father built during his career as a contractor. She is the ninth of fifteen children in the family and was raised in a Mormon household. Both of her parents were and continue to be devout Mormons. When Jenni was 17 she moved with her family to Logan where she graduated high school and then attended two years of school in Ephraim at Snow College. After getting her associates degree she returned to Logan where she attended USU and met me. She has always been interested in biology and the natural world.
Jenni recounted this family legend while working on Christmas crafts in our living room. The background of the legend started when she was a young girl and continues today. It is primarily a family legend that has been kept within the family and retold at appropriate times, usually in good humor.
While working on crafts and stitching and other things with my mom since I was young she would always say that when I make a mistake on what I’m working on it just lets out the evil spirits. I found out that she got in the habit of saying that because my grandma used to always say it to her when she was in the same situations.
Jennilyn told this story lightly and let out a chuckle after stating the belief because she said it seemed silly as she said it but it always made her feel better about making mistakes on projects when her mom told her that it was just letting the evil spirits out. She admitted that it’s obvious looking back that this was the only intent of her mom telling her about the legend.
Intro to Folklore
Semester and year
Tanner, Jon, "Releasing Evil Spirits" (2017). USU Student Folklore Fieldwork. Paper 12.