One question that has always intrigued me is what happens to demonic beings when immigrants move from their homelands. Irish-Americans remember the fairies, Norwegian-Americans the nisser, Greek-Americans the vrykolakas, but only in relation to events remembered in the Old Country. When I once asked why such demons are not seen in America, my informants giggled confusedly and said ‘They’re scared to pass the ocean, it’s too far,’ pointing out that Christ and the apostles never came to America.
Richard Dorson, “A Theory for American Folklore,”
American Folklore and the Historian
(University of Chicago Press, 1971)