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News Articles Relating to Hoodoo and Rootwork

Posted: Sun Apr 19, 2009 11:06 pm
by catherineyronwode
Here is a link to a 2008 news story about Tournament Poker Players and Coon Bones. Enjoy! ... poker.html

Re: Poker Players and Coon Bones in the News

Posted: Mon Apr 20, 2009 7:56 am
by Leah Rivera
Yay! Lucky Mojo in the News!

News Articles Relating to Hoodoo and Rootwork

Posted: Tue May 18, 2010 12:25 pm
by carolina_dean
The following news articles were found in the archives of the Beaufort Gazette, Beaufort South Carolina.

"Islanders Discount Root Magic"

"Cemetery Conceals Grisly Old Mystery"

"Unusual Occurrence Linked to Voodoo"

"That Old Black Magic Cast Spell Over Lowcountry"

"Quintessentially LowCountry: Sheriff J.E. McTeer"

"Let the Stories Flow as Beaufort Turns 300"

"Mysterious Objects Turn Up in Bluffton Cemetary"

"Cooking Up a Remedy"

"Beaufort County's Gardening Past"

Carolina Dean
56 G

Re: Nine Articles Relating to Hoodoo and Rootwork

Posted: Tue May 18, 2010 5:26 pm
by ConjureMan Ali
Oo thanks for this!

Re: Nine Articles Relating to Hoodoo and Rootwork

Posted: Tue May 18, 2010 6:25 pm
by carolina_dean
You're welcome. I lived in Beaufort for a year and collected some lore while I was there. Today I was bored and decided to check the archives of the major newspapers from all the places that I lived to see what I could find.

There was a lot of interesting information in those articles such as...
  • The funeral director being asked to put a live hen in a grave with a murder victim so that the murderer will die with the hen.
    A woman meeting a man named William Gregory, who was later identified as one of the many Dr. Buzzards.
    The list of herbs and their uses from the slave trade period.
All in all it wasn't a bad way to spend the afternoon.

56 G

Re: Nine Articles Relating to Hoodoo and Rootwork

Posted: Tue May 18, 2010 8:28 pm
by catherineyronwode
Thank you for this wonderful treasure trove!

Re: Nine Articles Relating to Hoodoo and Rootwork

Posted: Tue May 18, 2010 9:13 pm
by Joseph Magnuson
That's a great post! Thank you!

I have combed the internet for the better part of a year and have quite a nice collection of links to papers, articles, etc on hoodoo...

These are great to read!


Re: Nine Articles Relating to Hoodoo and Rootwork

Posted: Tue May 18, 2010 11:31 pm
by carolina_dean
Hey Cat, while you're on this thread...I was reading the coursebook for the Hoodoo Course a few weeks ago and saw that you collect fliers by readers. I have one that is about 7 or 8 years old that I found on my car after getting out of work one day. I scanned it and tried to send to you at When I sent it I got back a loooong form letter, I was just wondering if you got the flier?

Carolina Dean

Several More Articles Relating to Hooodoo

Posted: Wed May 19, 2010 2:43 pm
by carolina_dean
Here's some more articles I found online using the Google News Archives. The wind is getting up pretty bad here this afternoon and the power is flickering. I wanted to keep searching but was afraid I would lose everything I found so far is the power goes out. I'll post more as I find them.

Ok I'm only allowed 10 URLs per post. So I'll put half in this post and the rest in the comments section.

Carolina Dean

From the Archives of the Herald-Journal, Spartanburg South Carolina October 1992

Family May Go to Jail Together ... %2C2755289

This article is interesting in that the family is accused of hiring a man called Doc Buzzard, who later turned out to be an uncover Federal Agent, to cast spells for them and kill witnesses.

From the Archives of the St. Petersburg Times, Clearwater Florida, February 1935

Negro is Slain by Clear Water Police Officer: "Doctor" Buzzard Shot to Death During Scuffle in Squad Car ... %2C5593543

From the Archives of the Eugene Register, Virginia August 1989

Doctor Buzzard has the Voodoo Solution ... 31%2C52358

This seems to be a human-interest story featuring Ernest Bratton, who identifies himself as Doctor Buzzard. Mr. Bratton is a native of Gaffney, South Carolina and claims he was born with magical powers. There is a description of his tools and work area. This article also has a photograph of Mr. Bratton with his cat and some of his tools.

Here's the same story from a different newspaper. This article has a better photo graph of Mr. Bratton and the interview is slightly longer. ... %2C2260003

From The Afro-American, Dec 1941

Make Your Own Lucky Hands ... 2C20983124

This entire page has advertisements for different books, incense, readings, and even Rootworking services! However this specific advertisement is for a book called The Exposure of the Sorcerers and purports to teach you the Aunt Caroline Dye method of making lucky hands (mojo bags).

Here's the same advertisement from a different issue. These are clearer and easier to read. ... %2C2275296

From the Rock-Hill Herald, Rock Hill South Carolina Jun 1982

Death Penalty Sought ... %2C5983005

This story is about the sentencing of two men convicted of killing a Root Doctor, among other people. The last paragraph described the victim's home (altar, sign of animal sacrifice) and the contents of his pockets at the time of death (a fire-god figurine, and a mojo bag.)

From the Miami News, Miami Florida November 1971

Psychiatrist Talks Here on Witchcraft ... %2C3006029

This is a very interesting article about a child psychiatrist working in the Lowcountry (Southern South Carolina) who uses his patients belief in rootwork to help "cure" them. There is also mention of Dr. Buzzard, Dr. Crow, and Dr. Hawk.

From the Free Lance-Star, New York Sept 1952

Voodoo Doll Helps End Triangle Involving Wife, Mate, and Pal ... %2C2657673

I can't tell if this is supposed to be a true story or some kind of serial. The story tells how a man learned to use a voodoo doll against his rival from his black-magic believing made Mayola, who hails from Haiti.

Re: Several More Articles Relating to Hooodoo

Posted: Wed May 19, 2010 2:45 pm
by carolina_dean
Here's the rest

From the Victoria Advocate, April 1957

Voodoo Doll Aimed to Quell Nagging Male ... %2C6700584

A man's wife makes a voodoo doll of him to keep him from nagging her.

From the Lodi News Sentinel, April 1950

Successful Writer Turns Housemaid ... %2C2437728

A story about Zora Neale Hurston briefly giving up writing to work as a maid.

From the Afro-American, November 1932

Graveyard Dirt Foils Bloodhounds ... %2C2667264

An account of how police bloodhounds were unable to track a man after a visit to his father's grave.

Re: Several More Articles Relating to Hooodoo

Posted: Wed May 19, 2010 3:13 pm
by Devi Spring
Very cool! Thanks so much for posting these. :)

Re: Several More Articles Relating to Hooodoo

Posted: Wed May 19, 2010 3:43 pm
by carolina_dean
Here's some more:

From the Evening Independent, Sept 1933

"Colored" Conjure Student Tries it On Judge But it Doesn't Work ... %2C1519786

This story tells of a young man who lays a trick in a graveyard on the judge, jury, and solicitor in his trespassing trial.

From the Free Lance-Star December 1932

Conjure Man and Skunk Oil Really Exist in Far South ... %2C5130347

An article about African-American Beliefs in the 1930's South.

From the Polk County News, June 1926

A Conjure Doctor, A Black Cat, and a Black Man ... %2C2752976

An account of a "witch-doctor" practicing conjure on the plantation despite attempts to get him to stop.

From the Afro-American, May 1930

Arrest Conjure Man in Farm Mystery ... 5%2C689266

A self-styled 'praying doctor' is arrested for providing a man with poison to kill his wife.

From the Sunday Morning Star, December 1929

Tried to Conjure Court with Powders ... %2C2927534

An account of a man getting caught laying powders on a judge's desk before his trial.

From the Sarasota Herald-Tribune, September 1954

Minus Magic Shirt, Conjure Man Slain ... %2C1778174

A woman kills her tenant who she believes put a hex on her.

From the Milwaukee Journal, Jan 1959

New York Drugstore, 107 Years Old, Sells Concur Dust and Love Potions ... %2C3471199

Seems to be a Human Interest Story about a visit to a drug store that sells conjure supplies.

From the Lawrence Journal-World, June 1959

More to Witch-Doctoring than Hocus Pocus ... %2C5501516

A scientific look at the use of herbs used in rootwork.

Re: Several More Articles Relating to Hooodoo

Posted: Wed May 19, 2010 4:52 pm
by carolina_dean
From the Milwaukee Journal, Sept. 1949

Voodoo is on its Last Legs ... %2C4183304

A story about the waning influence of Voodoo in New Orleans.

From Wired News, October 2002

Finagling the Citizenship Lottery

Describes efforts by immigrants using magic to attempt to gain citizenship status in the United States. There is a description of a mojo and burning incense.

Re: Several More Articles Relating to Hooodoo

Posted: Wed May 19, 2010 10:31 pm
by ConjureMan Ali
This is awesome. I love readin gthem.

Re: Several More Articles Relating to Hooodoo

Posted: Wed May 19, 2010 10:46 pm
by Katie_Did1111
Oooooooh. . . I'm loving all of these, but thanks especially for the Zora Neale Hurston piece! <3


Re: Several More Articles Relating to Hooodoo

Posted: Thu May 20, 2010 7:22 am
by Joseph Magnuson
Thank you for sharing these links...some I have, but some I did not... They were all great to read!

Thank you thank you!!!


Re: Several More Articles Relating to Hooodoo

Posted: Thu May 20, 2010 10:25 pm
by carolina_dean
Thanks everyone, I was happy to share what I found with the forum. There were many, many other stories online but they could only be obtained by paying for them, which I am unable and unwilling to do at this time.

I hope this encourages you all to check the area in which you live and learn a bit more about the practice of conjure in your area of the world.


# 56G

Re: Several More Articles Relating to Hooodoo

Posted: Fri May 28, 2010 3:19 am
by cognitivedissonance
There sure are a lot of Doctor Buzzards out there...

Re: Several More Articles Relating to Hooodoo

Posted: Fri May 28, 2010 2:13 pm
by ConjureMan Ali
Doctor Buzzard was famous, or infamous depending on your point of view and as such sprung up a bunch of "little" Doctor Buzzards after his death.

I guess it is an homage to original.

Google News Archive

Posted: Sat Apr 02, 2011 9:34 am
by Zarzamora
The Google News archive has articles (very occasionally) as far back is 1830. Many of the articles are pay-per-view, but some are free. I've been doing some searches lately just to see what I can find from back then, and it seems like the most common thing to hit the news are court cases where a practitioner of Hoodoo is being tried because the client made a complaint.

Example: "A Dutchman Hoodooed" (1893, South Carolina) ... %2C4041886

This article mentions "graveyard dirt" and "dead man's powder" Also, "Hohler got a gourd and some powders from old Peter on another occasion. These he was to use for the general all round health of the family. He was to scrape the seed from the gourd at 12 o'clock one night, and at 12 o'clock the next night he was to sweep his yard clean and sprinkle the seed around the house. The gourd was to be filled with 13 drops of water of a peculiar hoodoo kind and some other fluid, then hung up in the house."

Of course the articles are written from a sensationalist white-audience-pleasing perspective, but I still think it's neat to have access to these records.

Re: Google News Archive

Posted: Sat Apr 02, 2011 9:39 am
by catherineyronwode
Thanks -- That one was a great find.

I have placed many such articles at -- a project of the non-profit Y.I.P.P.I.E. organization -- and, as always when i learn of a new article, i will remind folks reading this that if anyone with knowledge of html formatting wants to volunteer to help maintain and upgrade the site, i would be most grateful for the help. You will be credited by name, but, alas, there is no payment for the work.

Re: Google News Archive

Posted: Sat Apr 02, 2011 10:33 am
by Zarzamora
I have some basic HTML knowledge. These next few months I am extra-swamped at work, but I would love to help however I am able in the future. It sounds like a wonderful resource! :)

Re: Google News Archive

Posted: Sat Apr 02, 2011 10:41 am
by catherineyronwode
Zarzamora, thank you. If and when you have time, please arrange a telephone call with me (it will need to be scheduled through the shop office, due to my time constraints) and we can talk about what the project entails. Tell whoever you talk to in the office that this is about a volunteer project for YIPPIE and that i requested you call to set up an appointment. Thanks!

Re: Google News Archive

Posted: Thu Apr 07, 2011 8:43 am
by Joseph Magnuson
Zarzamora: Thank you so much for that link and for your intelligent post! It made my morning better!


Re: Google News Archive

Posted: Fri Jul 29, 2011 8:51 pm
by Zarzamora
Thanks Joseph! :) I'm glad you liked it. I love the google news archive.

Sexual Fluids in Coffee

Posted: Sun Sep 28, 2014 2:03 pm
by ConjureMan Ali
In interesting news: ... ird%20News

John Robert Lind Admits To Putting Semen In Co-Worker’s Coffee: Cops

by David Lohr, Senior Crime Reporter, The Huffington Post

09/05/2014 04:41 pm ET
Updated Jan 13, 2015

Re: Sexual Fluids in Coffee

Posted: Sun Sep 28, 2014 5:28 pm
by magicmurphy
He liked her and thought that was a way to get her to notice him? Seriously?...
Dude, that is not how to impress a woman.
Yeesh. Someone send that poor woman some Four Thieves Vinegar.

Keeping my lid on my lattes. LOL.

Doc Murphy
St. Paul, MN

Re: News Articles about Hoodoo

Posted: Mon Sep 29, 2014 12:43 pm
by Miss Aida

You're funny!! LOL

Re: News Articles about Hoodoo

Posted: Mon Sep 29, 2014 3:41 pm
by MissMichaele
Well... it was a trick, but not sneaky.

Seriously, why would anyone drink spoiled cream? Even if it was actually spoiled cream?

Re: News Articles Relating to Hoodoo and Rootwork

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 9:27 am
by AlyssaH
Not sure if this is for the news section, but it's written on a topical comedy site, but it gave me a chuckle & it's Hoodoo related :) (Spoiler, it's written from a sceptic's viewpoint.) ... ck-charms/

5 Famous Lucky Charms That Get More Baffling With Research

By Alice Jane Axness Alice Jane Axness · March 27, 2015

Re: News Articles Relating to Hoodoo and Rootwork

Posted: Tue Feb 14, 2017 7:40 pm
by catherineyronwode ... lston-shop



Man caught on camera dumping 'symbolic' pile of dirt at Ralston shop

by Steve Saunders

Monday, February 13th 2017

RALSTON, NE (FOX42KPTM) - Candle shop owner Alex Fernandez spent part of the afternoon reviewing his security footage.

"When we came in Sunday to open up, we noticed there was a pile of what looked like sand or dirt on the mat in front of our doorstep and that's not normal,” said Fernandez as he watched the video from Saturday night.

It shows a man dumping something from his bag on the front step of the Hearthside Candle shop in Ralston.

It's something that's left Fernandez stumped.

"We are a meta-physical shop and this was kind of the meta-physical equivalent of leaving a dead fish on someone's doorstep. It's meant as a threat," said Fernandez.

He says that threat could bring bad luck to his business, including a lack of customers.

"The fact that this person would do this and get caught doing it is just pretty stupid," Fernandez.

He says his focus is now to step up security. Since the incident, he has installed a new surveillance camera.

"We went and talked to people today to see if anybody had seen anything, and the community has really rallied behind us since we got here,” said Fernandez.

Re: News Articles Relating to Hoodoo and Rootwork

Posted: Mon Nov 20, 2017 7:45 am
by catherineyronwode
Here's an interesting news story, courtesy of Shelby O'Connelly, who spotted it and posted it to Facebook:


‘Beef Tongue Shut Up Hoodoo Spell’ Doesn’t Block Fraud Charges

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) – A financial adviser and former radio host accused of running a Ponzi scheme has discovered there is no magic way to escape the charges.

An FBI affidavit made public this week says agents searching Dawn J. Bennett’s home recovered instructions for placing three Securities and Exchange Commission attorneys under a “Beef Tongue Shut Up Hoodoo Spell.”

Agents found written instructions for casting spells – and also shelves filled with hundreds of pairs of shoes.


A full account of the findings at the home of Dawn J. Bennett, including multiple freezer spells made with the names of officials from the Securities and Exchange Commission, can be found here: ... doo-spell/

I am always fascinated to see evidences of folk magic in unlikely situations. In this case, it seems that the practitioner was printing out spells from the internet and using them to try to stop the court proceedings against her.

More details on Dawn J. Bennett and on the SEC case, as of 2016, can be found here: ... -j-bennett

Folks in Facebook are chuckling, saying that she did "the wrong spell" or that magic is foolish, but i give her an A for effort. She tried. The thing is, if she really is a criminal, she may have been so full of herself that she forgot that God also listens to the prayers of the sorrowful, the injured, and the victims of crimes such as these, and she was not the only one working to win.

My takeaway lesson from this is not that a greedy, narcissistic, rich, white woman used African American hoodoo spells that she found on the internet to try to beat a serious legal charge of financial fraud -- it's that in the Book of Proverbs 15:6-9 there is still great truth:

Proverbs 15

6 In the house of the righteous is much treasure: but in the revenues of the wicked is trouble.

7 The lips of the wise disperse knowledge: but the heart of the foolish doeth not so.

8 The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD: but the prayer of the upright is his delight.

9 The way of the wicked is an abomination unto the LORD: but he loveth him that followeth after righteousness.

Re: News Articles Relating to Hoodoo and Rootwork

Posted: Mon Nov 27, 2017 8:53 pm
by amypeacelove
So interesting that she’s out on a $5 million bond. I love the quote from Proverbs.

Re: News Articles Relating to Hoodoo and Rootwork

Posted: Wed Oct 24, 2018 3:44 pm
by ain sophist
There is an update on Dawn J. Bennett. the fraudster with the freezer spell. She was convicted. ... story.html

Not really worth posting except I was heartened that her personal beliefs were not dragged into the trial, considering the recent divisory political climate.

Article on Young Black Witches

Posted: Fri Nov 16, 2018 11:21 am
by hboston23
As an African American woman, witch, and root worker from Texas, I found this article very interesting. I am not, and have never been, one to adhere to any type of exclusionary groups, whether they be covens, churches, or anything else. I am always willing to take in knowledge whether it be from the European traditions, Native American, or Eastern. However, there have been many moments during my spiritual journey that I longed to see more people who "looked like me" or were raised in similar backgrounds and hearing about their own journeys and practices.

While I know there is some debate amongst Hoodoo practitioners about whether or not the origins stem from the Orisha centered traditions of West Africa, or are more closely associated with the deities and practices of the Congo, this is still an interesting article for me, mostly because it acknowledges the dual partnership and integration of Christianity with the African Spiritual traditions for today's young witches or color.

Disclaimer: I am not promoting any particular group with this post

Check it out! ... SEpqcnu6mQ

Canada scraps law prohibiting conjuration, fortune telling, etc.

Posted: Thu Dec 20, 2018 1:02 pm
by ain sophist
Canada overturned a law prohibiting "anyone who pretends to exercise witchcraft, sorcery, enchantment, conjuration or fortune telling, or claims to have the ability to find lost or stolen objects". Problematic workers now fall under general fraud laws.

The Washington Post: Canada decriminalized fake witchcraft. But it was too late for the ‘white witch of the north’. ... tch-north/

Re: News Articles Relating to Hoodoo and Rootwork

Posted: Fri Jan 17, 2020 12:24 pm
by ain sophist
Atlas Obscura sent me this one today: ... d-africans
what haint blue means to descendants enslaved africans?
As it says on the tin - Indigo, along with some brief discussion of root workers.