Saturday, December 12, 2015

20 Rare Vintage Photos of Christmas from the Victorian Era

It's hard to imagine now, but at the beginning of the 19th century Christmas was hardly celebrated. Many businesses did not even consider it a holiday. However by the end of the century it had become the biggest annual celebration and took on the form that we recognize today.

The transformation happened quickly, and came from all sectors of society.

Many attribute the change to Queen Victoria, and it was her marriage to the German-born Prince Albert that introduced some of the most prominent aspects of Christmas.

In 1848 the Illustrated London News published a drawing of the royal family celebrating around a decorated Christmas tree, a tradition that was reminiscent of Prince Albert's childhood in Germany. Soon every home in Britain had a tree bedecked with candles, sweets, fruit, homemade decorations and small gifts.

A family’s Christmas, 1897

The Night Before Christmas, 1898

A Victorian Christmas party

A woman returning home with a Christmas tree, 1895

Children around a Christmas tree in Russell County, between 1870s and 1890s

Children on their Christmas morning, 1856

Children on Victorian Christmas

Christmas morning, 1897

Christmas morning, 1898

Christmas, 1860

Little Victorian girl looking at the lighted Christmas tree

Man and his Christmas Tree, 1860

Santa Claus and Christmas Tree, 1897

Santa Claus telephone call, 1897

Two girls under a Christmas tree with their dolls, December 25, 1899

Victorian Christmas shopping

Victorian Christmas tree with flags and paper cones for candies or nuts on it, ca. late 1840s

Victorian Christmas, Scranton, Pennsylvania

Victorian family on their Christmas

Victorian woman sitting next a Christmas tree with candles

Woman with her daughter on Christmas, ca. 1890s

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