Christmas FeaturesChristmas HistoryChristmas Movies

Ten Things You Didn’t Know about Miracle on 34th Street

Three films made in quick succession post World War II have endured in the minds of Christmas fans as among the best of films ever made: It’s a Wonderful Life, The Bishop’s Wife and Miracle on 34th Street. But of those three films only Miracle on 34th Street was hailed as a classic from the start. The movie business in those first post-war years was risky at best. When films …
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The Controversy of Who Wrote A Visit from St. Nicholas

One of the more romantic notions associated with Santa Claus and Christmas comes in the form of an early 19th century poem titled A Visit from St. Nicholas. As the legend goes, college professor and devout church man Clement Clarke Moore was out delivering Christmas turkeys on a snowy Christmas Eve at the behest of his wife when he composed a poem to present to his children later that evening …
Christmas at WarChristmas FeaturesChristmas HistoryChristmas Shopping

The Year Santa was Nearly Banned

It is interesting to note in this day and age when Christmas shopping can be done on a device you hold in your hand and whatever it is you buy can be shipped to your home without you ever getting dressed what it was like 97 years ago as the U.S. government grappled with the idea of another Christmas at war. The year was 1918 and war was raging in …
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History of the American Christmas Tree

The story of Christmas trees in America usually takes us down the path of Hessian soldiers who showcased Christmas trees to George Washington’s troops during his famous Christmas trek across the Delaware. Historians explain that Christmas trees found their popularity in Pennsylvania over the ensuing 60 years in America as German settlers made them a permanent part of the American Christmas tradition. Others explain that Queen Victoria’s gaily decorated Christmas …
Christmas FeaturesChristmas HistoryChristmas Music

When Elvis Butchered White Christmas

White Christmas remains, more nearly 75 years since it was written, the most popular Christmas single of all time. Bing Crosby immortalized it with two recordings and a film. And an entire generation embraced it as not only a Christmas song but also an anthem of home and family. White Christmas has been recorded by literally hundreds of artists — many to critical acclaim, such as Tony Bennett and Dean …
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The History of Santa Claus is Coming to Town

Eddie Cantor, a comedian from the 1930s was given a new Christmas song to sing for his radio audience in 1934. Targeted at kids, the songwriters were frustrated at their inability to get it recorded and sold. Record labels thought the appeal too narrow to be successful. Cantor sang it live in a performance that was never recorded. The song proved such a hit it was recorded later by Tom …
Christmas FeaturesChristmas HistoryChristmas LegendsChristmas MusicChristmas TelevisionChristmas Video

A Masterful Telling of Luke 2

There is not a Christmas lover anywhere who does not know well the text of the Christmas story from Luke Chapter 2, from the New Testament. But never have you heard it with such precise storytelling ability as we see in this video of John Rhys-Davies with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir: For as great as that telling is on stage, listen to Rhys-Davies explain why this story is so important: …
Christmas FeaturesChristmas HistoryChristmas Music

The History of White Christmas

He knew the song was good. Using just 54 words and 67 notes Irving Berlin composed White Christmas over the holiday season of 1940. He liked it so much he told a secretary “I’ve just written a new song. Not only is the best song I’ve ever written, it’s the best song anybody’s ever written.” That was a pretty bold statement for a man who actually could not read a …
Christmas FoodsChristmas HistoryChristmas Traditions

History of Eggnog

Christmas of 1826 was snowy, cold and lonely for the cadets of West Point. Though called “men” they were really teenage boys — some as young as 17 — and they wanted to celebrate Christmas. Young Jefferson Davis, future president of the Confederate States of America, was among them. But West Point then, as it is now, was a house of order and discipline. The military academy was under the …
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History of Where Are You Christmas

Mariah Carey was denied a 2nd smash hit of Christmas back in 2000 all because of her marital woes. Today is August 14th, 2015 and there remains just 133 days in our Countdown to Christmas and today we mark it by declaring it Where Are You Christmas Day in honor of song writer and composer James Horner, who originally penned the song as “Christmas, Why Can’t I Find You“. Co-written …
Christmas CountdownChristmas FeaturesChristmas HistoryChristmas MoviesChristmas Video

The World’s First Christmas Movie

The world’s first Christmas movie dates back to 1898, an age well before even popular silent films shown in movie houses. Directed by George Albert Smith, a British pioneer of film making, this wonderful bit of film was considered a technological wonder of the time and to this day remains a cherished look back at Christmas in time: While it is a first among Christmas films it is also a …
Christmas HistoryChristmas LegendsMerry Podcast

The Misunderstood Legend of Krampus

High in the snowy back country of Germany children everywhere look forward to the early December feast day of St. Nicholas, that kindly gift bringer of ancient origin. But unlike other children German kids have not only to be on the lookout for St. Nick – but also for his alleged dark opposite known as Krampus. St. Nicholas is for the nice kids – Krampus is for those who are …
Christmas FeaturesChristmas HistoryChristmas Movies

Stuff You Did Not Know About Christmas Vacation

Nothing cools a summer heat wave better than a Christmas movie in July. And no movie is seemingly most appropriate for early season viewing than Christmas Vacation — that John Hughes classic from 1989 that never seems to age. The great thing about Christmas Vacation is that it is based on an even older Christmas. Hughes scripted the movie based on a short story he wrote titled Christmas ’59. Tech …