More Treats Than Tricks from San Francisco

Trick or Treat? Giving treats on Halloween originated with a religious holiday referred to as All Souls Day. Lost souls needed a treat so that they would not disturb the living. By the 1950s in America, children were dressing up and going through their neighborhoods asking for a treat to ward off the children’s tricks. In San Francisco, the treats included a homemade candy bar from Mr. Sam Altshuler, a Russian immigrant who founded the Annabelle Candy Company in the City in 1950.

Annabelle’s, named after the founder’s daughter, produced its best selling Rocky Road candy bar in the City until 1965 when the manufacturing moved across the Bay to Hayward. Sam died in 1971, leaving his company to its namesake, Annabelle. In 1972, the Company purchased Golden Nugget Candy Company, of San Francisco, and added Big Hunk and Look candy to the product list. The company still operates out of the Hayward location. Here is Sam’s granddaughter talking about continuing the tradition:

And what is Halloween without real ghosts? Here is a video clip from a local movie director, H.P. Mendoza, taking us on a short tour of “Haunted SF” :

And just for fun, check out these Halloween themed songs paired with film clips from the 1950s and 1960s from Lindsay Koski:

Best wishes,