Posted Dec 9 2017, 10:01 pm


Every Christmas millions of folks ‘deck the halls’ & most include the ritual of hanging bright ‘n shiny baubles & ornaments to their lofty evergreen boughs. But, did y’all know ‘glass ornament hanging’ in the U.S. didn’t even begin until the early Victorian era. Yep, ’tis true. Of course, Christmas trees had already graced homes in Germany as far back as the 15th century & decorated with apples & pastries & cotton-stuffed items. And by the 1700s, that custom traversed the great sea with German & English immigrants to reach our colonial shores.


However, in 1841, the Christmas decorating ‘theme’ was about to change forever when Prince Albert of England, a father of two children by then & missing his own childhood traditions back in Germany [glass beads were first crafted by glassblower Hans Greiner in Lauscha, Germany], decided to decorate the balsam tree at Windsor Castle with his own momentos. Even Queen Victoria, upon seeing the glorious site of their bedecked holiday balsam all aglow with candles & candies, tiny cakes & paper chains, wrote in her diary, “…it is like a dream come true.” —


And from that Christmas forward, cherished heirlooms of glass-blown German ornaments caught the candlelight on a million or more evergreens near & far & Christmas trees would never be the same.






In 1870, the first American-made glass ornaments appeared, & in 1880, the salesman, Frank Winfield Woolworth, began selling glass Christmas ornaments at his Great Five Cent Store.


Now, his silver mercury baubles & other glass blown ornaments were affordable for all Americans to buy– & the rest, as they say, is history. Soon, other merchants began selling these shiny little holiday treasures & by the turn of the century the humble lil’ Christmas ornament topped $25 million in sales across America. Today, Christmas tree decorations rank second only to gift purchasing in U.S. seasonal sales. And so, as you’re placing those beloved little baubles on YOUR family’s tree this year, you can share the tale of how all this ornamentation began. Happy holidays, Coffee Klatchers. I truly LOVE this time o’ year.


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