[Note: Parts of this entry were originally included at the entry callithumpian n.]
callithump v Also sp calithump chiefly NE old-fash
To engage in a callithump n 1; to “serenade” (someone) with a callithump n 1; hence vbl nouns cal(li)thumping, cowthumping.
1851 Portsmouth Inquirer (OH) 31 Oct /2, A young man named Elliston had the top of his head blown off, in Mentor, Ashtabula county, last week. He and three others were engaged in the very silly practice of callithumping a newly married couple. 1886 St. Paul Daily Globe (MN) 4 July 5/1, How Anoka Will Celebrate. . . The following program for July 5 will be presented: 9 o’clock a. m., Antiques and horribles propose to calithump, and the one who thumps the worst gets $8, second 3$, third $1. 1890 Eve. Sentinel (Carlisle PA) 2 Dec 1/2, A large number of the members of that lodge proceeded to the Washington house and at once gave . . their brother, Harry Rhinehart, a calithumpian serenade. . . “Riney” has helped to “calithump” many a poor fellow and had to take his share of it last night. 1941 LANE Map 409 (Serenade) 1 inf, csCT, Callithumping; 1 inf, cCT, Cowthumping; 1 inf, cCT, Callithumpian; [has heard] cowthumping; 1 inf, neMA, Calthumping; 1 inf, neMA, Cowthumping, on the Fourth of July: ‘You dress up as bad as possible, go out and wake everybody up.’ 1951 Life 29 Jan 9 cwCT,[Letter:] In your article, “Life Goes to a Charivari” . . you led me to believe that only the Midwest has such a custom. My home town of Woodbury, Conn., also has it. We call it “callithumping.” We have used dynamite and had the state police in utter confusion. We also claim the world’s record: one couple was callithumped 25 straight nights because they would not hand out cigars or refreshments. 1959 Bye Friendly Heritage 94 sePA (as of 1851), I never will forget the way they Callithumped thy grandfather and me. . . At first it sounded like a circus come to town, steam piano and all. 1969 DARE (Qu. AA18, . . A noisy neighborhood celebration after a wedding, where the married couple is expected to give a treat) Inf PA202, Callithumping band. 2013 in 2017 DARE File—Internet nwNJ, When I was a teenager he always had . . a listening ear for the day’s problems. His family taught me about elderberry jelly, cow thumping, dancing in the pig trough and never leaving from any other door then [sic] the one you entered.