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About the Photos

Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

© 2017 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Merry Christmas: 1951

Merry Christmas: 1951

"Tree -- Dec. 25, 1951." Merry Christmas from Blue Earth, Minnesota, and from Shorpy! 35mm Kodachrome by Hubert Tuttle. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

What is Real?

Is it then or now. Most kids today might say sometime in the future that their parents had "real" Christmas trees that were hand made in China.

Up until the first 'fake' Christmas tree, there were only real ones. I remember the smell of pine and my grandma saying "Now dear, do not touch the tree if you do not want to get sappy"

I guess in the end I am still sappy, but only about Christmas memories like this one from Shorpy.

[This blue spruce reminds your webmaster of his own childhood! - Dave]

Christmas Tree

Even today when I think of Christmas trees this is what I think of. All through the 50's and 60's this was the only type that were usually sold in the Houston area. I was even a little mad when one Christmas season I was very sick and my mom went out and got a tree for my apartment and she got a spruce instead of a "real" Christmas tree.

Soup box

I assumed the soup box is how the relatives brought over the presents and they just hadn't gotten around to unloading them before the picture was taken.

We used boxes like these when we went camping.

Fire Hazard Reduction

Alas, no wax candles, as far as I can tell.

Being traditionalists, my parents didn't go electric until the late 1970ties.

The smell of real beeswax candles on a real tree is unsurpassed. As well as the arrangement and re-arrangement of the candle holders until daddy was satisfied that all candles well were clear from any branch above. Which took hours. Not to mention daddy's hawkeyed supervision of his kids dearest lighting those candles on X-mas eve. Once. With all due care. And him not leaving the living room until the candles were out again.

The plant stand

Anybody notice the plant in a Calumet baking soda can?

1950s Ornaments

We have some of the same ones (notably the glass birds with the glass fibre tails) on our tree, handed down and carefully preserved. A nice reminder of Christmas growing up in the '50s.

Merry Christmas Shorpyites!

Takes hours to wrap, minutes to destroy

My eldest sister's first job was at a department store in the gift wrap department. She is now in her middle 60s. To this day, when I receive a present from her, it is wrapped to perfection, taped and ready for presentation.

These presents remind me of her skills. As a man, I really prefer the gift bags with tissue paper.

Tinsel perfectionist

Would have made my sister proud; whilst my brother and I preferred to throw handfuls at the tree; she always insisted on draping them one strand at a time.

There were some years we hated her.

At Last!

Something that can compete with the wallpaper!

My first electric train

And a red AMT '51 Pontiac were under our tree on Christmas 1951! Wish I had both back!

The Box!

What jumped out at me about this picture was the Campbell's Soup box! I remember having these at home with stuff stored in them. A product of the days when people would go and get empty boxes from the back of the grocery store to use for storage.

Tinsel on the tree

And snow on the ground.

SHORPY HISTORICAL PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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