Christmas Festive Bonanza Digest

To celebrate the festive season we have put together, just for you our beloved readers, a little Christmas digest including all our festive content from this year and last. Enjoy!

Diary Days from Christmas Past


With December 25th fast approaching we have put together a little collection of entries for Christmas Day from an eclectic mix of different diaries spanning five centuries, from 1599 to 1918. Amid famed diarists such as the wife-beating Samuel Pepys, the distinctly non-festive John Adams, and the rhapsodic Thoreau, there are a sprinkling of daily jottings from relative unknowns – many speaking apart from loved ones, at war, sea or in foreign climes.
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A Pictorial History of Santa Claus


Contrary to what many believe, Santa Claus as we know him today – sleigh riding, gift-giving, rotund and white bearded with his distinctive red suit trimmed with white fur – was not the creation of the Coca Cola Company. We’ve put together a little pictorial guide showing his evolvement through the ages.
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Scrooge, or, Marley’s Ghost (1901)


Scrooge, or, Marley’s Ghost, directed by Walter R. Booth, is the oldest known film adaptation of Charles Dickens’ 1843 novel A Christmas Carol – featuring the miserly Ebeneezer Scrooge confronted by Marley’s ghost and given by visions of Christmas Past, Present and Future.
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The Night Before Christmas (1905)


1905 version by the Edison studios of the poem first published anonymously in 1823 and generally attributed to Clement Clarke Moore, although the claim has also been made that it was written by Henry Livingston, Jr. Musical accompaniment added later, made up mostly of old cylinder recordings from the same studio and period.
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Santa Clause Conquers the Martians (1964)


Santa Claus Conquers the Martians is a 1964 science fiction film that regularly appears on lists of the worst films ever made. It is regularly featured in the “bottom 100″ list on the Internet Movie Database, and was featured in an episode of the 1986 syndicated series, the Canned Film Festival.
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Yuletide Entertainments (1910)


Yuletide Entertainments: Christmas recitations, monologues, drills, tableaux, motion songs, exercises, dialogues and plays, suitable for all ages, by Ellen M. Willard; 1910; T. S. Denison & company, Chicago. Christmas recitations, monologues, drills, tableaux, motion songs, exercises, dialogues and plays, suitable for all ages.
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Santa Claus Proves There is a Santa Claus (1925)


Santa Claus Proves There is a Santa Claus (with song “Christmas Comes But Once a Year”) by Ernest Hare (1925). Hare’s recording career began when he became Al Jolson’s understudy in the Broadway musical Sinbad during 1919-20. After he met Billy Jones in 1919, they went on to do numerous recordings together for Brunswick, Edison and most other major U.S. record companies of the era.
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A Christmas Sermon by Robert Louis Stevenson (1900)


A Christmas Sermon by Robert Louis Stevenson written while he convalesced from a lung ailment at Lake Sarnac in the winter of 1887. In the short text he meditates on the questions of death, morality and man’s main task in life which he concludes is “To be honest, to be kind — to earn a little and to spend a little less, to make upon the whole a family happier for his presence.”
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Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus (1897)


When Dr. Philip O’Hanlon was asked a question by his then eight-year-old daughter, Virginia, whether Santa Claus really existed, he suggested she write to The Sun newspaper. The response to Virginia’s letter by one of the paper’s editors, Francis Pharcellus Church, remains the most reprinted editorial ever to run in any newspaper in the English language.
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Illustrations of Snowflakes (1863)


The illustrative plates from Snowflakes: a Chapter from the Book of Nature (1863), a collection of poems, extracts, anecdotes and reflections on the theme of snow and the snowflake. According to the preface of the book, apart from the first few geometrical figures at the top of the first plate, which show the primary geo- metrical forms under which the snow-vapor crystalizes, all the other forms shown are “representations of individual crystals, actually observed and sketched with the aid of the microscope”.
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The Snowflake Man of Vermont


Weather scientist Keith C. Heidorn takes a look at the life and work of Wilson Bentley, a self-educated farmer from a small American town who, by combining a bellows camera with a microscope, managed to photograph the dizzyingly intricate and diverse structures of the snow crystal.
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