The story of the jack-o-lantern

Have you ever wondered about the backstory on carving pumpkins to make jack-o-lanterns?

A historical expert with the Department of Agriculture says that it is based on an Irish story from the 1700s.

According to Anne Effland, Jack was a liar and a “good for nothing character” being pursued by the devil. He tricked the devil into climbing a tree and cut a cross into the tree, which meant the devil could not climb down out of it.

Jack eventually let him down, but the grudge was held and Jack’s spirit was forced to roam the earth.

Reportedly, the devil tossed Jack a glowing ember and he carved out a turnip he was eating to keep the light protected from wind and rain. Jack and his lantern thus jack-o-lantern.