Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The "War" On Christmas ???

SBNR.org has an American Christmas Quiz. Just in case you think Christmas "as we know it today" is the way it is supposed to be, from either side of the argument. Here is one of the answers to one of the questions, to give you some help...

The early Puritan settlers didn’t like anything about Christmas and fined people for observing it. They didn’t believe Christmas to be a religious holiday and deplored the secular celebrations that had developed in England, where Christmas was a rowdy holiday that included much jovial feasting, drinking, and game-playing, none of which were in keeping with the Puritan philosophy. Puritans even banned the holiday in Boston between 1659 and 1681.

The American Revolutionaries opposed Christmas celebrations on the simple basis that Christmas was an English holiday. During the Revolutionary War between the American Colonies and Great Britain, it was fashionable to oppose all things English, which is also why Americans started drinking coffee instead of tea. George Washington made his famous crossing of the Delaware River on Christmas day, and the first session of Congress under the new American Constitution met on Christmas day, which would indicate that America’s founding fathers didn’t pay much attention to Christmas either.

Christmas also was the subject of rigorous religious debate among various Christian sects in America’s 1700s. Those wanting to distance themselves from the Church of England or from the Pope and the Roman Catholic Church opposed Christmas for both secular and religious reasons. These included the Baptists, Calvinists, Presbyterians, and Quakers, who continued to oppose Christmas until the 1800s. Christmas became an official national holiday in the United States in 1870, and the last state to recognize Christmas as a holiday was Oklahoma in 1907.


MadPriest said...

In Dickens' "Christmas Carol," Scrooge buys the biggest turkey in London for the Pratchetts on Christmas Day.

MadPriest said...

Or should that be "Cratchits"?