Wedding Brooms

“JUMPING THE BROOM” was a common wedding ceremony tradition in pre-emancipation African-American culture.   Slaves in the USA were not considered legal persons and were consequently denied the right to enter into legal contracts, including formal marriage.  Denied the dignity of marriage, they instead created a ceremony (possibly modeled after a West African tradition) to signify to their own community the depth of their commitments.  Though largely abandoned over the intervening years, the custom is being re-discovered and employed by historically-conscious brides and grooms who want to add historical and cultural gravitas to their ceremony.

In brief, a broom (an innocuous item possessed by almost all households) is used by a member of the wedding party to sweep around the bride and groom, symbolically sweeping away the “old” represented by their earlier, separate lives.  Later, the broom is laid down, and the newly joined couple jumps over it together, symbolizing joyfully leaping over a threshold into their new shared life.

The Broom Brothers consider it an honor to create beautiful wedding brooms that will not only enhance your ceremony but also become your treasured family heirloom.  Any broom can be a “wedding broom,” with the only prerequisite being that it’s a broom that’s used in a wedding; however, we like to add symbolism to beauty by crafting double brooms – two broom heads tied onto a forked handle and sewn together so they form a single broom at the bottom, suggesting the melding of two lives into one.

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