Greek Daily -- January 02, 1929Daily Items - the First of the Year
p. 1.- The first day of the new year was celebrated in that special fashion the American people have of welcoming the New Year. It is true that in no other part of the world does New Year's Day incite such great enthusiasm as it does in America.
It is also known that this enthusiasm provokes ample sacrifices to "Bacchus."
We can truly say that in America New Year's Day lives up to the tradition of the ancients, and there aren't any prohibitive laws able to stop the sacrifices on that day to the "God" of gaiety and joy.
In contrast with the American people, we, the Greeks, try to get into the impenetrable and solve the secret of destiny by sacrificing on that day our last penny to appease bad fortune and incite good will.2
There are also no laws prohibiting us to play our card games and offer our adoration on New Year's Day to our "God" whom we have named "Saint Basil" since we accepted Christianity.
This custom of ours (of playing cards on New Year's Day) is so generally known by the American people, that on that day special permission is given by the police to allow card playing or rather gambling, in all the Greek centers.
This privilege was given to the Greeks on the establishing their first colony in Chicago in 1890. In that year they celebrated their first New Year's Day in America by playing their national game called, "Passeta" or "Fairbanks," in all the Greek centers of that time.
Due to the fact that the police authorities did not know this Greek custom, they arrested all who were playing cards and brought them to the police station. Then the ever memorable Father Fiampolis went to 3the police authorities and by explaining to them that it was a religious custom and a national tradition to play cards and bamble on New Year's Day, he not only secured the Greeks' freedom but they were given permission to continue observing their national tradition.
Faithful as ever, our countrymen celebrated on New Year's Day, gambling and playing cards in all the different Greek centers with the greatest devotion in the all night celebration.
We wish them happiness and many returns of the day of "Saint Basil."
III B 3 b, I B 4
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