Take time out from the holiday hustle-and-bustle while enjoying these fun facts about Christmas:
- Most music historians agree the song “The Twelve Days of Christmas” with all its confusing rigmarole of lords-a-leaping and swans-a-swimming was meant to teach children their numbers and has no strong holiday connection.
- In 1856, President Franklin Pierce, a native of New Hampshire, had the first Christmas tree set up in the White House. It took until 1895 for President Grover Cleveland to become the first President to use electric lights on the White House tree.
- Christmas was not a holiday for children until the 19th The Dutch and the Germans were the ones who centered Christmas in the home and within the family circle.
- The Santa we know traces his costume and history to St. Nicholas, also called Nicholas of Bari and Nicholas of Myra (and Santa Claus), who lived early in the fourth century in what is now Turkey. St. Nicholas showed his devotion to God in extraordinary kindness and generosity and is one of the most popular minor saints commemorated in the Eastern and Western churches. His feast day, St. Nicholas Day, is celebrated Dec. 6 and he is now associated with the festival of Christmas.