Niagara Gazette — The idea of gift giving centered mainly on children and stores began to advertise Christmas shopping in 1820 with newspapers prospering from their creation of separate sections for holiday advertisements. In 1822 Clement Clarke Moore, an Episcopal minister, wrote a long Christmas poem for his three daughters and his tale is largely responsible for the “right jolly old elf” image we see today.
In 1841, thousands of children flocked to a shop in Philadelphia to see a life-size model of Santa Claus and soon he could be seen “live” in all major department stores. The Salvation Army began dressing unemployed men as Santa in the 1890s and sending them into the streets of New York to raise funds for needy families. This reminded everyone of the generosity of the original Saint Nicholas and the real “reason for the season” which many will celebrate this week.
Merry Christmas to all and to all a good “week.”Norma Higgs serves with the Niagara Beautification Commission and Niagara Falls Block Club Council.