Christmas HistoryChristmas Past

Kings of Christmas Extravagance

By Jeff Westover The history of Christmas through the ages is written in chapters of contrasting observance. One chapter could speak of the sanctity of the season, observed in hushed commemoration. And yet another chapter could speak of it as a season of riotous overindulgence, wild parties and outright mockery of things held sacred in churches. The 11th century was such a time especially in medieval England. The season by …
Christmas FeaturesChristmas HistoryChristmas PastChristmas Traditions

Christmas Giving: Are you a Spug?

By Merry Carey Are you a Spug? To find out, ask yourself these questions: Do you believe that it is foolish to join in giving Christmas presents to those higher up? Do you believe that it is vulgar to give Christmas presents only because they are given to you? Do you believe that it is wicked to give Christmas presents without love and common sense? In 1912, if you answered …
Christmas HistoryChristmas PastChristmas Stories

The Halifax Christmas Disaster of 1917

By B. Francis Morlan Editor’s Note: Every December the City of Halifax, Nova Scotia sends a Christmas tree to the City of Boston, Massachusetts. This story explains how that came about. December of 1917 was a time when the world was in transition. The horrors of World War I were known and the prospects of a merry Christmas were subdued in communities across the world as men and women left …
Christmas HistoryChristmas Past

The Christmas Tree Ship

By B. Francis Morlan The year of 1912 was tough for sailors. Dominating the news was the tragic voyage of the Titanic, which went down in April of that year off the Newfoundland coast. But another maritime tragedy struck in November of 1912. It is a story of superstition, ghosts and Christmas trees. At the helm and lost in this tragedy was a man known affectionately as Captain Santa. Herman …
Christmas HistoryChristmas Past

Who Put the X in Christmas?

In recent years many retailers have come under fire for using the word “holiday” in substitution for the word “Christmas” in their advertising. But some have problems with the term “Xmas” as well. Just ask gift shop owner Trent Wilson. He meant no harm when he used the term “Xmas” in a 2007 ad he placed in a local newspaper. But one simple letter to the editor unleashed a torrent …
Christmas HistoryChristmas LegendsChristmas Past

The True Story of Santa Claus

Santa Claus is real. And this is his true story. Born nearly 2000 years ago, not too long after the days that Jesus Christ walked the earth, Nicholas was born to wealthy parents in a tiny village in the country we today call Turkey. Though Nicholas was a child of privilege, he was raised a Christian and at a very young age was devoted to the faith. Nicholas’ parents died …
Christmas MemoriesChristmas Past

Christmas in the 1930s

By Tomm Larson “Grandpa, why is there an orange in my Christmas stocking?” “Cause when I was a little boy. . .” “You were a little boy? That must have been a loooong time ago.” “It was, I was little way back in the thirties.” “What’s the thirties?” “That was a time called the Great Depression.” “Why was it called that? Was everybody sad?” “No. . ., well there were …
Christmas FeaturesChristmas HistoryChristmas Past

Christmas at the White House

Christmas of 1924 in the White House was a sad and glum affair. The new tradition of lighting the National Christmas Tree, started just a year earlier, was the last thing President Calvin Coolidge wanted to do. Though the event had enjoyed widespread publicity he simply lacked the heart to participate. It was only a last minute change of heart that made it come to pass. That Christmas President Coolidge …