Sunday, December 21, 2008

Pratt Stories - Aunt Eva the Teacher II

Earlier this month Pat Geisler responded to Linda's recalling of the girls at Covert doing Double Dutch jump roping (or is it rope jumping) when Aunt Eva was teaching there:
"Double Dutch--My first experience with that...was when I worked at Chicago Boys/Girls Club summer camp at Lake Winona, IN. I was enthralled.
The chants:
I went downtown to see Janes Brown
He gave me a nickle to buy me a pickle......etc
And the more familiar:
Fudge, fudge, call the judge
Mama's got a newborn baaaaby
Wrap it up in tissue paper
Send it up the elevator
First floor stop
Second floor stop........etc
I thought at the time it would be a fun topic for a PhD thesis--the origin and evolution of jump rope "songs", tho no doubt it had been done. Oral history of culture from girls' point of view."
MY NOTE: I Googled Double Dutch and learned among other things: Double Dutch is a rope skipping exercise where two people (usually young girls) spin two ropes eggbeater fashion with one or two others jumping simultaneously. It probably evolved from old-time rope making which requred great nimbleness and dexterity in the so-called rope walks. Dutch settlers brought the game to the Hudson River Valley where the English settlers first saw it. The game has grown over the years, particularly in urban areas. It became a favorite pastime to sing rhymes while turning and jumping. There is a Disney Channel original movie called "Jump In". Next year Double Dutch will be a varsity sport in New York City high schools.
Elaine Flore Emails: "And Audrey Shane had Aunt Eva as a teacher and of course once called her Aunt Eva which made her school friends laugh."

Emailed August 26.

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