#1 – In 1836, Alabama was the first state in America to recognize Christmas as an official holiday. And the next was Oklahoma in 1907…over 70 years later!
#2 – The image of Santa Claus and his sleigh of flying reindeer was created by writer, Washington Irving, the author of ‘The Legend Of Sleepy Hollow’.
#3 – The song ‘Jingle Bells’ was actually written for Thanksgiving, not Christmas. Created by James Pierpont in 1857, the song simply became so popular around the Thanksgiving holiday that people kept singing it straight through Christmas, and that’s where it stayed. However, if you look at the lyrics of the song itself, Christmas is never mentioned. Not once. Just bells and fun. It mentions a ‘sleigh’, but it’s a ‘one horse’ open sleigh…not Santa’s, which is driven by eight reindeer. (Nine, when Rudolph was later added in 1939)
#4 – The origin of the Christmas tree is actually set in ancient pagan rituals where branches from evergreen trees were used to remind people and give hope for a bright and prosperous Spring to come once the Winter was over.
#5 – In 1886, The Statue of Liberty was graciously given to the United States of America by France…as a Christmas gift! Still the biggest international gift ever received to this day.
#6 – Have a sore throat? Try eating some of the marshmallows you bought for your hot chocolate. Marshmallows were originally meant to be used for pain relief. They were never meant to be a candy treat.
#7 – In Norway, it is custom for the families to hide their brooms away on Christmas Eve, and may even go so far as to protect them by firing of few gunshots into the air! This is due to an old legend where the evil spirits of witches would go through the town stealing the brooms, and using them to fly over the town, creating misery and havoc for everyone in their path.
Wait…are evil witch spirits even afraid of guns??? Oh…wait…I guess they are!
(That’s not doctored! Go back and look at the movie! Scarecrow was gonna bust a CAP in that bitch! LOL!)
#8 – While some may have followers on both sides believe that Christianity and Islam are in direct conflict with one another, this isn’t even close to being true. In fact, in the Islamic faith, Jesus Christ is depicted as a great prophet of God, and whenever his name is mentioned…it is supposed to be followed by the words, “Peace Be Upon Him”. And much like the Prophet Muhammad, Islam highly condemns having any depictions of Jesus in a physical form. So both faiths are very closely related. In fact, the Muslim Quaran describes and praises the life and times of the Virgin Mary more than the Christian Bible does.
#9 – One Christmas tradition that may come off as a bit ‘odd’ to many. The tradition is called ‘Mari Lwyd’, and is only celebrated in Wales. During the holidays, the celebration (Which means ‘grey mare’ in English) involves people using an actual horse’s skull, decorated with ribbons and bells, put onto the top of a pole, and covered in a large white sheet! Then, they go from door to door throughout the town, singing songs and challenging neighboring families…to a rap battle? WTF??? Then they get invited inside for refreshments and it’s meant to mean good luck. So I’m guessing that it’s like Christmas caroling, mixed with a horror movie, meets ‘8 mile’? Ok…have a blast. I can’t say that it doesn’t sound like fun. Hehehe, but please don’t ever show up to my front door with an actual animal skull on a pole and a white sheet…or ummm…I’m calling the police!
#10 – Before Charles Dickens, no great author had ever performed his own work in a public theater personally or for profit. He was the first. ‘A Christmas Carol’ was met with great success and critical acclaim by all who saw it. Then, after quite an extensive run, Dickens waited until the end of his performance one night, telling the audience, “From these garish lights, I vanish now, forevermore. With a heart filled, grateful, respectful, and affectionate farewell.” Shocked, he was first met with complete silence from the audience…then a roar of cheers and applause. With tears in his eyes, he blew them all one final kiss…and he departed the stage for the last time, never to return. Charles Dickens passed away three months later, on June 9th, 1870, at the age of 58.