Category Archives: Christmas

December 24, 1914: The Christmas Truce


On the whole, people don’t generally like to kill one another.  Most wars throughout history are often more about the agendas of the state’s leaders than the soldiers on the field actually inherently feeling any real malice towards those they are asked to try to kill or otherwise defeat.  Few events in history illustrate this as well as a remarkable […]

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December 23rd: The Poem “The Night Before Christmas” was Published Anonymously


This Day In History: December 23, 1823 On this day in history, 1823, the poem A Visit from St. Nicholas, better known today as The Night Before Christmas or ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas was first published.  The poem first appeared in the New York Sentinel with no author listed, having been delivered for publication by a friend of Clement […]

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The Song “Silver Bells” was Originally Called “Tinkle Bell”


Today I found out the Christmas song Silver Bells was originally called Tinkle Bells. To make matters slightly more humorous, Silver Bells originally appeared in the The Lemon Drop Kid, a 1951 film starring Bob Hope.  Needless to say, these two things would have surely resulted in the song getting a few chuckles, had composer Jay Livingston’s wife, Lynne Gordon, […]

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Brenda Lee was Just 13 Years Old When She Recorded the Christmas Staple “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree”

Brenda Lee Dancing with Elvis Presley

Brenda Mae Tarpley (a.k.a. Brenda Lee and “Little Miss Dynamite”) was born to an extremely poor family in December of 1944.  Things took a turn for the worse when her father, a onetime semi-pro baseball player and carpenter, died in a construction accident in May of 1953 when she was 8 years old. Within two years of this happening, the […]

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5 Bizarre Christmas Traditions


Guest post by Jennie Reedy: holiday decorating consultant, author, and blogger. She recommends Charlotte Holiday Lighting Installation for residents of Charlotte, NC looking for professional holiday lighting installation. Christmas around the globe is celebrated with many customs and traditions. Often the traditions are similar with only slight variations from country to country, but some Christmas traditions are truly bizarre. (Note: […]

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It’s a Wonderful Life was Based on a “Christmas Card” Short Story by Philip Van Doren Stern


Today I found out It’s a Wonderful Life was based on a “Christmas Card” short story by Philip Van Doren Stern, which was originally sent out to around 200 of Stern’s friends and family in December of 1943. The short story was called The Greatest Gift and was inspired by a dream Stern had one night in the 1930s.  Stern, […]

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The “X” in “Xmas” Doesn’t Take the “Christ” Out of “Christmas”


Myth: “Xmas” is a non-religious name / spelling for “Christmas”. It turns out, “Xmas” is not a non-religious version of “Christmas”. The “X” is actually indicating the Greek letter “Chi”, which is short for the Greek, meaning “Christ”. So “Xmas” and “Christmas” are equivalent in every way except their lettering. In fact, although writing guides such as those issued by […]

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The Real Life “George Bailey” Who Founded Bank of Italy which Became Bank of America

A.P. Giannini

Today I found out about the real life “George Bailey” (It’s a Wonderful Life), who founded the Bank of Italy which became Bank of America. The man was A.P. Giannini who was said to be who Capra modeled the character of George Bailey as well as the bank president in Capra’s 1932 movie, American Madness, after.  At the age of […]

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Eating Kentucky Fried Chicken is a Christmas Tradition for Many Japanese

KFC Christmas Tradition

Today I found out Kentucky Fried Chicken is a Christmas tradition  for many Japanese. So how exactly did Christmas, the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ, become synonymous with a bucket of fried chicken in the land of the rising sun?  Well for one, Christmas wasn’t really celebrated at all historically in Japan and has only relatively recently been […]

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Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer Was Created By the Department Store Chain Montgomery Ward

original book cover

Today I found out Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer was created by the department store chain Montgomery Ward as a way to save money on one of their annual Christmas promotions. The year was 1939; Montgomery Ward, at that time, gave away coloring  books to try to get more shoppers into their stores during the holiday season.  Up to this point, […]

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The Song “Jingle Bells” Is Thought to Have Been Written for a Thanksgiving Sunday School Program

One Horse Open Sleigh Painting

Today I found out the song Jingle Bells is thought to have been written for a Thanksgiving Sunday school program. Jingle Bells was originally called One Horse Open Sleigh and was written by James Pierpont sometime between 1853 and 1857. At the time, Pierpont was working as an organist and music director in Savannah, Georgia.  Pierpont was hired on by […]

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