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A look back: Halloween in Layton used to be all about tricks, not treats

Article Published 10/27/2014

Halloween in Layton a century ago, in 1914, was all about pranks and parties, not candy.

Just like the rest of the nation, trick-or-treating didn’t catch on until the late 1940s, after World War II.

According to the Davis County Clipper of Nov. 6, 1914, there was a big Halloween party at the Miss Mary Ellison home on Oct. 31.

However, many of the local boys were out doing their Halloween pranks – including just outside the party home.

“They let the air out of the automobile tires, scattered accessories around, took harness apart stringing the parts along the fences, etc., which made the visitors a great deal of trouble to get them all together again,” the Clipper newspaper reported.

What was the party at the Ellison home like?

“The house was appropriately decorated for the occasion and a regular Halloween menu was served. A cavern was provided where a witch told fortunes,” the Clipper stated.

 -Jump ahead to 1939 and Halloween in Layton included tons of sugar beets having been dumped along a railroad spur that were destined for the Layton Sugar Company plant. According to the Clipper of Nov. 3, 1939, five juvenile boys were apprehended for this crime, as similar calls to the sheriff kept officers busy all night.

The porch of a Layton resident almost caught fire when a signal flare was thrown there by pranksters. The owner found the porch in time before much damage was done.

Phyllis and Bernice Pettit of Layton also hosted a slumber party on Halloween night, complete with elaborate decorations and plenty of food.