Every family has it’s own Christmas traditions. Whether you’re hiding a pickle, dreaming up new activities for the Elf on a Shelf, or fighting over the best white elephant gift. So it gives us that loving holiday feeling. So, how does American’s First Family celebrate their Christmas? The celebrations of Christmas in the White House has evolved during the years.
In the 19th century, Christmas was a small family affair at the White House. Just like everyone else, they decorated their home. They then had a simple celebrations with their family. So one of the most elaborate parties held was by President Andrew Jackson in 1834. There were games, dancing, and even an indoor “snowball” fight!
The first White House Christmas tree was in 1889. The first electric lights on the tree were used in 1894 by Grover Cleveland. Did you know that President Theodore Roosevelt did not approve of Christmas trees? As a conservationist, he refused to cut down a tree for decoration. His rebellious son Archie smuggled one in once and kept it in a closet!
Calvin Coolidge president over the first Christmas tree lighting in 1923. Mrs. Henry Hoover established the tradition of trimming the tree in 1929. Since then, the First Lady has been in charge of decorating the tree. The tree is in the Blue Oval Room.
The tradition of choosing a theme for the tree was established by Jaqueline Kennedy in 1961. Since then, themes have included American Flowers, All Creatures Grand and Small, and A Red, White, and Blue Christmas.
This year, the theme the Obamas have chosen is The Gift of Service and Sacrifice. This it to pay tribute to our nation’s service members and veterans for their service and sacrifice. First Lady Michelle Obama has chosen the theme for the Blue Room tree to be “We the People”. It features a ribbon depicting the preamble of the United States Constitution and pictures of American workers and families.
The First Family wants to celebrate Christmas just like us. From everyone at Express Plumbing Service, we wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.