Tales of Christmas Past



Merry Christmas!

The Atlantic takes an interesting look at the biblical Christmas story. It endures for many reasons, most of them religious, of course. But, as one storytelling expert points out, the “story has everything—audacity, wonder, awe, journey, vulnerability, courage, tragedy—and they all collide in a single narrative.” Further, “If you were to direct this as a Hollywood movie, all the typical elements of great storytelling are there.”

And while we are on storytelling: Like a lot of people, I’m a big fan of A Christmas Carol, so I would feel remiss if I didn’t share a bit of history about the Dickens masterpiece. Here’s a succinct piece that nicely explains how and why he wrote it, the powerful political and social statement it made, and its impact.

Santa hasn’t always looked the same. Most of you are probably already aware of the roles that Thomas Nast, Norman Rockwell, and Coke played in the evolution of Santa, but here’s a good collection of images that traces Santa Claus through the ages.  

And while we’re looking at pictures, here’s a nice collection of historical images of people enjoying Christmas. I have a coffee table book with these kind of images in it, and it is always fun to look at. This online collection also has some interesting and cute photos. Take a look!

This is the 60th year that NORAD has tracked Santa’s flight. How did the whole thing get started? It is a tale rooted in the Cold War, and a misdialed phone call.

Check out the uncertain, surprising, and slightly racy history of the Jingle Bells song. 

How about a bit of military history and Christmas? Here are four major military events that happened on Christmas. I bet you can guess the first one.

And lastly, here’s a solid, yet succinct history of the evolution of how Americans have celebrated Christmas.  I hope you enjoy your’s today!



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