Christmas in Colonial America

In this busy season of shopping, decorating, and partying, it might be good to reflect on what Christmas was like for our forefathers. This excerpt from Spring House describes Christmas in 1765 for Adam and Jennetta Mitchell:

The Mitchells, as was their custom, met at Uncle Robert’s house on Christmas Eve for a celebration of the birth of their Savior Jesus Christ. This year the Reverend David Caldwell came by with his new bride Rachel, who was the third daughter of Reverend Alexander Craighead. …

After dinner the family attended the first Christmas Eve service conducted by Reverend Caldwell at Buffalo Creek Presbyterian Church. The new minister’s wife, Rachel Caldwell, had brought a large box of beeswax candles, which had been given to her as a wedding present. She thought it would be nice for the head of each family to light and hold a candle during the service. She’d seen this done at one of her father’s churches and thought it would add a special ambiance to her husband’s service.

After church Adam and Jenny walked the short distance to their log cabin. Jenny gave Adam the warm hat with ear flaps she’d knitted. Adam surprised Jenny with the lavender soap he’d been saving for the occasion. Jenny was delighted with the gift – she’d never had soap scented with lavender before, and Adam was both impressed with Jenny’s talent and glad for the practicality of the hat. This Christmas was a joyous one for the newlyweds.

[tags]Early American trivia, Spring House, Christmas[/tags]

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