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Hoodoo in Theory and Practice by catherine yronwode
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THE CLOVER HORN COMPANY

In May, 1995, my friend K. Rudin gave me a 1951 catalogue from Clover Horn Products of Baltimore, Maryland, which awaits image scanning and a thorough write-up. K. visited this outfit and even briefly worked there during the late 1960s. At that time the company, which still exists, was owned by a Jewish-American chemist named Marcus Menke, who sold and distributed hoodoo supplies and cosmetics for the African-American market, as well as Jewish religious supplies for hoodoo practitioners.

Marcus Menke was born in Memphis, Tennessee, in 1895 to Issac Menke (1858 - 1927) and Bertha Cohen Menke (1870 - 1933), one of ten children. His father ran a carpet installation and cleaning service on Beale Street, and the entire family worked in that business until after World War One.

By 1924, Marcus Menke lived in a small bungalow on North Parkway and was listed in the Memphis City Directory as a salesman -- probably for the Memphis-based Keystone Chemical Company, which had just been started by Menke's cousin Joseph Menke and his partner Morris Shapiro, a real estate agent and the son of the Russian born dry-goods merchant Sol Shapiro and his wife Sarah. Within a year, Keystone Chemical Company was re-titled Keystone Laboratories "The Reliable Company," and moved into the manufacture and marketing of hoodoo supplies and African American cosmetics throughout the South.

By 1933 Joseph Menke's partner, Morris Shapiro, had left Keystone and was the president of Lucky Heart Laboratories (later Lucky Heart Cosmetics), one of the largest manufacturers and distributors of hoodoo products, but Marcus Menke kept on working for his cousin: In 1937 he resided on Pryor Street in Atlanta, Georgia, where he was listed in the City Directory as the regional branch manager of Keystone Laboratories.

Joseph Menke died in 1940, and although Keystone continued in business under the leadership of his widow Hilda and son Hubert, Marcus Menke, after six years as a spiritual supply merchant, did not stay with them, perhaps because there were personal and family disagreements over his role under the company's new leadership. Instead, he moved to Newport News, Virginia, in 1940, where he briefly returned to his old family trade in the carpet installation and cleaning business.

In 1942, during World War Two, Menke was employed by the government in the U. S. Naval Shipyard in Portsmouth, Virginia, residing on Chestnut Street. In 1943 he relocated to Baltimore, where he once more took up the work of supplying hoodoo and conjure practitioners with rootwork goods, founding his own organization, the Clover Horn Company, on 350 North Gay Street. He eventually expanded to a second shop in Washington D.C.

From the beginning, Clover Horn's Baltimore manufactory, like Keystone and Lucky Heart, catered to an African-American clientele with the usual mixed line of cosmetics, drugs, and hoodoo spiritual supplies found in many hoodoo drug stores in the Black communities of those days. Menke, who had a background in chemistry, manufactured his own cleaning supplies and toiletries himself and acquired others through distribution deals with Keystone in Memphis and the Valmor / King Novelties / Famous Products Company in Chicago.

Marcus Menke sold both retail and wholesale, as well as by mail order. Along with Morton Neumann of Valmor, he was one of the two suppliers of herbs, soaps, washes, oils, and other articles to the great African American healer and root doctor Dr. Jim Jordan, who operated a general store and hoodoo shop in Como, North Carolina from 1927 until his death in the early 1960s.

One thing that set Marcus Menke's establishment apart from some others of its era was that, like the Oracle Products Co. of New York City, owned by "The Mysterious Mr. Young," the Clover Horn Company always carried a line of Jewish religious goods (and even kosher soap), as well as Christian and African-diaspora spiritual supplies.

Among the Clover Horn's most popular products was Temple Fragran, a liquid spiritual cleaning product similar to Young's brand, Chinese Wash. However, rather than being a carbon copy of Chinese Wash, Temple Fragran was actually formulated in a manner more closely in accord with African American folk magic traditions of floor washing and sweeping because it included broom corn straws right in the bottle, with instructions that when you were finished with the liquid soap, you were to take the broom corn straws and scatter them in your yard.

Mr. Menke still owned and operated both Clover Horn stores during the late 1960s when my friend worked for him, but by that time the growth of cut-rate drug store chains had caused him to limit his stock to spiritual supplies.

When Mr. Menke died in July of 1973, he left each of the stores to his employees so that the work would be carried on. The pictures on this page are of an advertisement that ran in the "Baltimore Afro-American" newspaper on August 23, 1958 and of the Clover Horn store in Washington, DC, as it looked in 2012.

Keystone Laboratories and Lucky Heart Cosmetics continue in business to the present, selling a variety of hair care and skin products, none of which are spiritual or magical in nature.

Illustrations of labels, packaging, catalogue pages, advertisements, and agents' flyers for Valmor, King Novelty, Lucky Brown, Lucky Heart. Clover Horn, and other cosmetics and spiritual supply companies of the pre-World-War-Two era, plus further text-based information on the interplay between occultism and hoodoo in the inter-war period, can be found on these "Hoodoo in Theory and Practice" pages by cat yronwode:

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LUCKY MOJO is a large domain that is organized into a number of
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You are currently reading
HOODOO IN THEORY AND PRACTICE by cat yronwode
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Here are some other LUCKY MOJO web sites you can visit:

OCCULTISM, MAGIC SPELLS, MYSTICISM, RELIGION, SYMBOLISM
Hoodoo in Theory and Practice by cat yronwode: an introduction to African-American rootwork
Hoodoo Herb and Root Magic by cat yronwode: a materia magica of African-American conjure
Lucky W Amulet Archive by cat yronwode: an online museum of worldwide talismans and charms
Sacred Sex: essays and articles on tantra yoga, neo-tantra, karezza, sex magic, and sex worship
Sacred Landscape: essays and articles on archaeoastronomy and sacred geometry
Freemasonry for Women by cat yronwode: a history of mixed-gender Freemasonic lodges
The Lucky Mojo Esoteric Archive: captured internet text files on occult and spiritual topics
Lucky Mojo Usenet FAQ Archive: FAQs and REFs for occult and magical usenet newsgroups
Aleister Crowley Text Archive: a multitude of texts by an early 20th century occultist
Lucky Mojo Magic Spells Archives: love spells, money spells, luck spells, protection spells, and more
      Free Love Spell Archive: love spells, attraction spells, sex magick, romance spells, and lust spells
      Free Money Spell Archive: money spells, prosperity spells, and wealth spells for job and business
      Free Protection Spell Archive: protection spells against witchcraft, jinxes, hexes, and the evil eye
      Free Gambling Luck Spell Archive: lucky gambling spells for the lottery, casinos, and races

POPULAR CULTURE
Hoodoo and Blues Lyrics: transcriptions of blues songs about African-American folk magic
EaRhEaD!'S Syd Barrett Lyrics Site: lyrics by the founder of the Pink Floyd Sound
The Lesser Book of the Vishanti: Dr. Strange Comics as a magical system, by cat yronwode
The Spirit Checklist: a 1940s newspaper comic book by Will Eisner, indexed by cat yronwode
Fit to Print: collected weekly columns about comics and pop culture by cat yronwode
Eclipse Comics Index: a list of all Eclipse comics, albums, and trading cards

EDUCATION AND OUTREACH
Hoodoo Rootwork Correspondence Course with cat yronwode: 52 weekly lessons in book form
Hoodoo Heritage Conjure Workshops: hands-on rootwork classes, lectures, and seminars
Lucky Mojo Community Forum: an online message board for our occult spiritual shop customers
Lucky Mojo Hoodoo Rootwork Hour Radio Show: learn free magic spells via podcast download
Lucky Mojo Videos: see video tours of the Lucky Mojo shop and get a glimpse of the spirit train
Lucky Mojo Newsletter Archive: subscribe and receive discount coupons and free magick spells
Follow Us on Facebook: get company news and product updates as a Lucky Mojo Facebook Fan

ONLINE SHOPPING
The Lucky Mojo Curio Co.: spiritual supplies for hoodoo, magick, witchcraft, and conjure
Lucky Mojo Publishing: books on magic with herbs, roots and candles, sugar spells, bone divination, and more!
Herb Magic: complete line of Lucky Mojo Herbs, Minerals, and Zoological Curios, with sample spells
Mystic Tea Room Gift Shop: antique, vintage, and contemporary fortune telling tea cups

PERSONAL SITES
catherine yronwode: the eclectic and eccentric author of many of the above web pages
nagasiva yronwode: tyaginator, nigris (333), Haramullah, nocTifer, lorax666, Troll Towelhead, !
Garden of Joy Blues: former 80 acre hippie commune near Birch Tree in the Missouri Ozarks
Liselotte Erlanger Glozer: illustrated articles on collectible vintage postcards
Jackie Payne: Shades of Blues: a San Francisco Bay Area blues singer

ADMINISTRATIVE
Lucky Mojo Site Map: the home page for the whole Lucky Mojo electron-pile
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How to Contact Us: we welcome feedback and suggestions regarding maintenance of this site
Make a Donation: please send us a small Paypal donation to keep us in bandwidth and macs!

OTHER SITES OF INTEREST
Arcane Archive: thousands of archived Usenet posts on religion, magic, spell-casting, mysticism, and spirituality
Association of Independent Readers and Rootworkers: psychic reading, conjure, and hoodoo root doctor services
Candle Ministry: Missionary Independent Spiritual Church deacons will set lights for your petitions and prayers
Candles and Curios: essays and articles on traditional African American conjure and folk magic, plus shopping
Crystal Silence League: online prayer request network; upload your prayers here and pray for the welfare of others
Gospel of Satan: the story of Jesus and the angels, from the perspective of the God of this World
Hoodoo Psychics: connect online or call 1-888-4-HOODOO for instant readings now from a member of AIRR
Missionary Independent Spiritual Church: spirit-led, inter-faith; prayer-light services; Smallest Church in the World
Mystic Tea Room: tea leaf reading, teacup divination, and a museum of antique fortune telling cups
Satan Service: an archive presenting the theory, practice, and history of Satanism and Satanists
Southern Spirits: 19th and 20th century accounts of hoodoo, including ex-slave narratives & interviews
Spiritual Spells: lessons in folk magic and spell casting from an eclectic Wiccan perspective, plus shopping
Yronwode Home: personal pages of catherine yronwode and nagasiva yronwode, magical archivists
Yronwode Institution: the Yronwode Institution for the Preservation and Popularization of Indigenous Ethnomagicology

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