The Shivaree

Apparently the word shivaree comes from a French word charivari which basically means headache. It was usually the single men and teenaged boys who were involved in the merriment of the shivaree, playing tricks on the newly married couple. When the wedding celebrations had finished, and the bride and groom had left the reception, the people involved in the shivaree would go to where the newly weds were staying and make very loud noises by banging pots and pans, ringing cowbells, blowing horns, singing, letting off fire crackers etc. In some places the groom would then come out and give the crowd candy so that they would go away. In other places, however, when the groom appeared, tricks might be played such as kidnapping the bride or groom, or finding their house in disarray.

In the case of The Waltons shivaree, it was arranged by Yancy Tucker and Ike Godsey and it was for Olivia's niece Olivia and her new husband, Bob. Unfortunately Bob was most upset by the goings on, mostly because he didn't understand the custom. The song which was sung for the couple as their family and friends gathered around them was "Let Me Call You Sweetheart".

My thanks go to Brenda and Shirley for providing information about shivarees.

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