Posts Tagged ‘Christmas’

‘Bout Christmas

December 10, 2011


The kindling’s all cut and the basement swept,
And everything’s where it should be kept;
In lessons he’s most perfected,
Does other things least expected.
That’s my son
On the run
For his dad
‘Bout Christmas.

I have never to look for coat or hat,
Neither to wonder where’s this or that,
My ties hang neatly on the rack,
And my soiled linen’s in the sack.
That’s my girl,
She’s a pearl
For her dad
‘Bout Christmas.

— M.F.S.

Appleton Post Crescent (Appleton, Wisconsin) Dec 24, 1924

Amarillo Daily Globe (Amarillo, Texas) Dec 10, 1941

Holly Song

December 9, 2011

Holly Song.

Care is but a broken bubble,
Trill the carol, troll the catch,
Sooth, we’ll cry, “A truce to trouble!”
Mirth and mistletoe shall match.

Happy folly! We’ll be jolly!
Who’d be melancholy now?
With a “Hey, the holly! Ho, the holly!”
Polly hangs the holly bough.

Laughter lurking in the eye, sir,
Pleasure foots it frisk and free,
He who frowns or looks awry, sir,
Faith, a witless wight is he!

Merry folly! What a volley
Greets the hanging of the bough!
With a “Hey, the holly! Ho, the holly!”
Who’d be melancholy now?

— Clinton Scollard in Century Magazine.

Beaver Falls Tribune (Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania) Dec 19, 1912

Appleton Post Crescent (Appleton, Wisconsin) Dec 9, 1921

Christmas Beef

December 6, 2011


In the good old days, in the spacious days, when the Christmas feast began,
There was good clean air between house and house, good faith between man and man;
To the lonely houses the men came home, and the doors were strong and stout
To shut the man and his friend-folk in, and to shut the foemen out.

*     *     *     *     *
Now the snow is trampled by million feet; the world is lighted and loud,
And Christmas comes to a hurried host of neighborless men in a crowd;
And round are the mince pies sold in the shops, and the holly and yew tree bough;
And the beef and the beer and the Christmas cheer are brought by the tradesfolk now.

The wind no more between the house and house blows free and freezing and sweet;
The houses are numbered all in a row and squeezed in a narrow street;
We know not the breed of our Christmas beef, nor the brew of our Christmas beer.
Yet we sit round our table and call our toast, though it come but once a year.

— E. Nesbit in December Pall Mall Magazine.

The Daily Northwestern (Oshkosh, Wisconsin) Dec 3, 1898

The Daily Review (Decatur, Illinois) Dec 24, 1892

The Daily Northwestern (Oshkosh, Wisconsin) Dec 23, 1925

Appleton Post Crescent (Appleton, Wisconsin) Dec 6, 1921

Snow’s a Bleak and Ghostly Thing

December 5, 2011


When I was young, long, long ago,
I loved to see the falling snow;
but now that I am old and bent,
I do not like it worth a cent.
The land looks ghastly, stark and dead,
when over it the snow is spread;
the land where late the roses bloomed
is in its shroud in snow entombed.
I like this good old pleasant globe
when shining verdure forms its robe,
when grass is growing on the hills,
and codfish sport along the rills;
then everything seems full of vim;
I dance and shake a buoyant limb;
and if some common village scold
come up to tell me I am old,
I turn a handspring on the green,
to show that I am sweet sixteen.
It takes the sunshine and the breeze
to limber up a dotard’s knees,
and make him feel he’s still on earth,
a creature of some use and worth.
But when he from the window looks
on naked woods and frozen brooks,
on snow wreaths whirling in a rage,
he feels the burden of his age.
It seems to him his age must be
a thousand years, plus two or three.
And all the boys he used to know
are sleeping somewhere ‘neath the snow;
and colder than a miser’s soul
the snow comes down, while church bells toll
a requiem for Tom or Jim —
when will the blamed bells toll for him?
Such thoughts the drifting snowflakes bring;
and snow’s a bleak and ghostly thing.

Walt Mason

Ogden Standard Examiner (Ogden, Utah) Dec 21, 1920

Appleton Post Crescent (Appleton, Wisconsin) Dec 5, 1921

Asking Too Much

December 4, 2011

“I’m afraid, child, you are asking old Santa for too much this year.”
“Well, it is a good bit, mother, but with all the toys he’s got he’ll never miss ’em.”

The Deming Headlight (Deming, New Mexico) Dec 16, 1927

Ogden Standard Examiner (Ogden, Utah) Dec 4, 1931

NOTE: Number of shopping days were different back then. I couldn’t find a “Days till Christmas” for Dec 4th.

Aw, Beans!

December 3, 2011


(A play in 4 acks.)

Ack 1.

Boy: Hay ma, would you mind please taking me down town so I can see Santa Claws and tell him wat I wunt for Chrissmas?

Boys mother: Wy certeny, the plezzure will be all mine.

Ack 2.

Skinny Salivation Army Santa Claws: How do you do, boys? Wats you wunt for Chrissmas if youre a good boy?

Boy: Ice skates, a sled, a drum and gum boots, thanks.

Ack 3.

Fat Salivation Army Santa Claws: Hello there, boy. Wat can I do for you this Chrissmas in case youre a good boy?

Boy: Holey smoaks, are you Santa Claws?

Fat Salivation Army Santa Claws: Certeny.

Boy: Well then who was that other guy?

Fat Salivation Army Santa Claws: Are you going to tell me wat you wunt or are you going to pass on and give somebody elts a chance, wich?

Boy: Ice skate, a sled, a drum and gum boots, thanks.

Ack 4.

Reel Santa Claws: Ah there, boy enything speshil you wunt for Chrissmus and if so wat?

Boy: Aw beans!

Reel Santa Claws: Beans for Chrissmas? Haw haw wat a unusual child.

Boy: Youre the 3rd guy told me they was Santa Claus.

Reel Santa Claws: But I reely am.

Boy: Aw beans!

Reel Santa Claus: You can ask your mother if I aint.

Boys mother: How can I tell?

Boy: Aw beans, lets go home, ma.

(Wich they do.)

Reel Santa Claws: Darn the luck.

The end.

Ogden Standard Examiner (Ogden, Utah) Dec 11, 1920

Appleton Post Crescent (Appleton, Wisconsin) Dec 3, 1921

First of December

December 1, 2011

ON DECEMBER 1ST, 1841, the celebrated Dr. George Birkbeck died in London.

He was a physician, the son of a Yorkshire banker, and the originator by his lectures to Glasgow workingmen of the system of instruction for the application of science to the practical arts. This was the germ from which Mechanics Institutions, technical schools, and manual training has been the ultimate growth.

Bangor Daily Whig and Courier (Bangor, Maine) Dec 1, 1892

Appleton Post Crescent (Appleton, Wisconsin) Dec 1, 1921

The Night After Christmas

December 22, 2010


The following is an amusing parody upon Clement Moore’s unequalled “Night before Christmas:”

‘Twas the night after Christmas, when all through the house
Every soul was abed, and as still as a mouse;
The stockings, so lately St. Nicholas’ care,
Were emptied of all that was eatable there.
The darlings had duly been tucked in their beds —
With very full stomachs, and pains in their heads.

I was dozing away in my new cotton cap,
And Nancy was rather far gone in a nap,
When out in the nurs’ry arose such a clatter,
I sprang from my sleep, crying — “What is the matter?”
I flew to each bedside — still half in a doze —
Tore open the curtains, and threw off the clothes;
While the light of the taper served clearly to show
The piteous plight of those objects below;
For what to the fond father’s eyes should appear
But the little pale face of each sick little dear?
For each pet that had crammed itself full as a tick,
I knew in a moment now felt like Old Nick.

Their pulses were rapid, their breathing the same,
What their stomachs rejected I’ll mention by name —
Now Turkey, now Stuffing, Plum Pudding, of course,
And Custards, and Crullers, and Cranberry sauce;
Before outraged nature, all went to the wall,
Yes — Lollypops, Flapdoddle, Dinner and all;
Like pellets which urchins from popguns let fly,
Went figs, nuts and raisins, jam, jelly and pie,
Till each error of diet was brought to my view,
To the shame of Mamma and Santa Claus, too.

I turned from the sight, to my bedroom stepped back,
And brought out a phial marked “Pulv. Ipecac.,”
When my Nancy exclaimed — for their sufferings shocked her —
“Don’t you think you had better, love, run for the Doctor?”
I ran — and was scarcely back under my roof,
When I heard the sharp clatter of old Jalap’s hoof.
I might say that I hardly had turned myself round,
When the Doctor came into the room with a bound.
He was covered with mud from his head to his foot,
And the suit he had on was his very worst suit;
He had hardly had time to put that on his back,
And he looked like a Falstaff half fuddled with sack.

His eyes, how they twinkled! Had the Doctor got merry?
His cheeks looked like Port and his breath smelt of Sherry,
He hadn’t been shaved for a fortnight or so,
And the beard on his chin wasn’t white as the snow.
But inspecting their tongues in despite of their teeth,
And drawing his watch from the waistcoat beneath,
He felt of each pulse, saying — “Each little belly
Must get rid” — here he laughed — of the rest of that jelly.”

I gazed on each chubby, plump, sick little elf,
And groaned when he said so, in spite of myself;
But a wink of his eye when he physicked our Fred
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread.
He didn’t prescribe, but went straightway to work
And dosed all the rest, gave his trousers a jerk,
And, adding directions while blowing his nose,
He buttoned his coat; from his chair he arose,
Then jumped in his gig, gave old Jalap a whistle,
And Jalap dashed off as if pricked by a thistle;
But the Doctor exclaimed, ere he drove out of sight,
“They’ll be well by to-morrow — good-night, Jones, good-night!”

The Golden Era – Jan 19, 1862

Images from A Polar Bear’s (Christmas) Tale blog posting of, A Visit From Saint Nicholas, 1862 by Clement Moore.

An Old-Time Gift

December 20, 2010


In grim old Puritanic times
A heathen feast was Christmas thought.
They made no cheer, they rang no chimes,
There were no Christmas presents bought.

Yet Dorothy and Samuel,
Two centuries and more ago,
On Christmas eve at curfew bell
Stood close together in the snow.

And standing there so sweet and prim,
All quivering with fear and cold,
Her timid red lips gave to him
A Christmas gift worth more than gold.

I do not care for crochet ties,
Nor slippers made of brodered crash;
Tobacco pouches I despise
And poor cigars and silver trash.

But this the best of gifts would be —
Yet how dare I such treason tell?
If Gladys would bestow on me
What Dorothy gave Samuel.

— Life.

The Nebraska State Journal (Lincoln, Nebraska) Dec 25, 1897


Word of the day:

crash (2)
a plain-weave fabric of rough, irregular, or lumpy yarns, for toweling, dresses, etc. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2010.

“Brodered” — I would guess that might be a short/slang version/spelling of embroidered. has an entry for “broider” listed as an archaic form of embroider.

YesterYear for Christmas

December 22, 2009

Thomas Nast illustration, Harper's Weekly

Image from Cannonba!! at York Blog (local history section)



We are waiting, brother, patiently awaiting
To feel thy fond, fond kiss upon our cheek;
And breathe the welcome words we fain would speak
To thee — the hero, who the tide of battle
Strong, hast breasted since the last time greeting.
We are waiting, patiently awaiting.

We are waiting, brother, hopefully awaiting,
Within our dear old home the childhood light
Is burning cheerily for thee to-night.
Seasons are weary since our New Year parting,
And changes many since our last fond meeting.
We are waiting, hopefully awaiting.

We are waiting, brother, anxiously awaiting,
Ever through the long, long night we’re pining.
Thou comest not while stars are sweetly shining,
Nor yet at morning in the glory light.
And when the sunshine and the day is waning
We are waiting, anxiously awaiting.

We are waiting, brother, tearfully awaiting,
White as snow, thy mother’s cheek is failing
While listening to the chill wind wailing.
The Christmas hearth-lights burn but dimly — faintly!
Cold dew-damps gather fast, and hope is dying.
We are waiting, tearfully awaiting.

Hark! hear the watch dog bark! we are not waiting!
We hear a manly voice so soft and tender —
We raise our own to meet thy dark eyes splendor —
That heart beat — then Christmas chime is sweeter,
Lights are brighter and the hearth stone, glowing.
Thank God! we are not waiting, vainly waiting.

Yes, we are waiting, hopelessly awaiting.
A messenger came with that cruel letter:
Be patient, mother dear. I am not coming;
No leave of absence yet — no home returning.”
For me no Christmas chimes, no hearth light burning.
Only waiting, hopelessly awaiting.

Dear brother, through this agony of waiting,
“While the old year lies a dying” — waiting!
Other forms we love may come without thee!
Thy vacant place, ah! none can fill it!
Thy voice is silent — again to hear it!
God grant we may not thus be ever waiting!

SALLIE J. HANCOCK, of Kentucky.

The Portsmouth Times (Portsmouth, Ohio) Jan 9, 1864

From the Wilkesbarre Democrat.


Turkies! who on Christmas bled,
Turkies! who on corn have fed,
Welcome to us now you’re dead,
And in the frost have hung.

“Now’s the day and now’s the hour,”
Through the market how we scour,
Seeking Turkies to devour,
Turkies old and young.

Who would be a Turkey hen;
Fed and fatten’d in a pen —
Kill’d and ate by hungry men; —
Can you tell, I pray?

Lay the proud old Turkies low,
Let the young ones run and grow,
To market they’re not fit to go,
Till next Christmas day.

The Adams Sentinel (Gettysburg, Pennsylvania) Dec 27, 1831


Let this day see all wrongs forgiven,
Let peace sit crowned in every heart;
Let bitter words be left unsaid,
Let each one take his brother’s part;
Let sad eyes learn again to smile, —
A day is such a little while, —
Of all days this the shortest!

Let rich and poor together meet,
While words of kindness fill the air;
Let love spread roses in the way,
Though winter reigneth everywhere;
Let us know naught of craft or guile,
A day is such a little while, —
Of all days this the shortest!

Let us help, each with loving care,
Our brothers on the way to Heaven;
Let’s lay aside all selfishness;
Let pride from every heart be driven,
Let Christmas-day bring many a smile, —
A day is such a little while, —
Of all days this the shortest.

Indiana Weekly Messenger (Indiana, Pennsylvania) Dec 22, 1880

The Christmas Jubilee.

We can almost hear the chiming
Of the joyous Christmas bells;
Almost feel the mirth and gladness
That the Christmas tide foretells.
We can almost hear the echo
From Judea’s distant plain;
Almost hear the bursts of music
That will float in sweet refrain.

Everywhere in expectation
Hearts are beating with delight,
And in childhood’s happy kingdom
Every eye is beaming bright.
Soon the dawn will be upon us
As from out the night it wells,
And the earth will hear the music
Of the merry Christmas bells.

Soon the wondrous star of glory
Will illume the Eastern sky,
And the angel bands of heaven
Will sing paeans from on high.
Soon the story of the manger
Will be heard throughout the earth,
And each heart will leap with gladness
O’er a loving Savior’s birth.

Soon the chiming bells of Christmas
Will be ringing sweet and clear,
Pealing forth the joyful message
To all nations, far and near.
Soon the lofty dome of heaven
Will resound with music sweet,
As the bells of earth exultingly
The old-time song repeat.

Hail we then the joyful Christmas —
Happiest time of all the year —
With its sweet and ringing music,
With its mirth and boundless cheer.
Every lip is singing praises;
Every fireside rings with glee;
Every heart is shouting “welcome!”
To the Christmas jubilee.

— G.C. RHODERICK, JR., in Middletown Register.

The News (Frederick, Maryland) Dec 21, 1891

Yule-Tide in Many Lands

by Mary P. Pringle and Clara A. Urann 1916

Chapter IXYule-Tide in America