The origin of Halloween dates back almost two millennia to a Celtic harvest festival entitled Samhain which is celebrated in November commemorating the start of the Celtic New Year. It is said that on Samhain, souls of the dead were said to return to Earth and during these celebrations bonfires and burning sacrifices were rampant in the area. Although pumpkins themselves were unknown to Europe at this time, there is evidence that Samhain traditions included hollowing out gourds to serve as lanterns to light the way at night or also to ward off evil spirits. Irish immigrants brought this tradition to America in the nineteenth century and altered the size of the lantern from a gourd to a pumpkin because they were larger and better for carving, hence the creation of the Jack O’Lantern. This below article goes into greater detail on the history of the Halloween pumpkin – enjoy!