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Thursday

June 3, 2021

 

 

Gather 'round kids.  This time we'll visit:

 

Today's Episode:

 

 

 

 

Christmas isn't Christmas without lights.

 

Most of us started with a "Christmas Tree" so let's start here.

A Christmas tree is a decorated tree, usually an evergreen

conifer, such as a pine, spruce or fir, that many believe

originated in Germany by Saint Boniface. It was traditionally

decorated with roses made of colored paper, apples, wafers,

tinsel, and sweetmeats. The earliest known, firmly-dated

representation of a Christmas Tree is on the keystone sculpture

of a private home in Turckheim, Alsace, with a date of 1576.

 

First published image of a Christmas Tree, frontispiece

to Hermann Bokum's 1836 The Stranger's Gift.

 

Christmas Trees were adopted in upper-class homes in

18th century Germany, where they were occasionally

decorated with candles, a comparatively expensive

light source at the time. Candles for the tree were glued

with melted wax to a tree branch, or attached by pins.

 

 

Around 1890, candleholders were first used for the

"Christmas Candles". Between 1902 and 1914,

small lanterns and glass balls started to be used

to hold the candles.

 

 

An engraving published in the 1840s of Queen Victoria

and Prince Albert created a craze for Christmas trees.

 

Soon, everyone wanted a Christmas Tree.

"Father and son with their dog collecting a tree in the forest"

Painting by Franz Kruger (1797-1857)

 

 

 

 

BUT, LIT CANDLES ON A DEAD TREE?

What could possibly go wrong?

 

 

 

 

Ah, but a change was coming:

 

The first known electrically illuminated Christmas tree

was the creation of Edward H. Johnson, an associate of

​inventor Thomas Edison. While he was Vice President of

the Edison Electric Light Company, he had Christmas tree

light bulbs especially made for him. He proudly displayed

his Christmas Tree, which was hand wired with 80 red,

white and blue electric incandescent light bulbs the size

of walnuts, on December 22, 1882 at his home on Fifth

Avenue in New York City.

 

Local newspapers ignored the story, seeing it as a

publicity stunt. However, it was published by a Detroit

newspaper reporter, and Johnson has become widely

regarded as the "Father of Electric Christmas Tree Lights".

 

 

By 1900, businesses started stringing up Christmas lights

behind their windows, but they were way too expensive

for the average person. Electric Christmas lights did not

become the majority replacement for candles until 1930.

 

 

Advertisements blossomed and Christmas become a retail bonanza.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Soon, the tree became something just to hold

the lights. Creativity blossomed, technology

advanced, and as light sales grew, so did

neighborhood bragging rights.

 

 

 

and what would the season be without

"Coach is Here"

 

Then came the bubbles . . . and there was no turning back!

 

 

 

 

And when that wasn't enough, we tackled the entire house.

 

 

 

 . . . and then more lights . . .

 

 

. . . and even more

 

Could there be too many lights?  (there are many opinions here)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Somewhere around this time, we went smaller.

We rediscovered little houses.

 

 

 

Then, we realized we could add lights!

And life was good.

 

Any size could now have lights.

And we needed lights, lights, LIGHTS!

 

 

 

ALL HAIL THE MIGHTY VILLAGE LIGHT!

 

Whether singles, or six at a time,

Christmas for villagers was changed forever.

(after all, this website is about LIT villages)

  

 

My current choice is twelve at a time.

 

We gladly risked certain death (or divorce) and

paid any cost to satisfy our passion.

 

(some Villagers had "large" displays)

 

All these wires were the biggest display headache, and

they stifled creativity. The most time consuming and

aggravating step, became how to hide the wires. Some

of us just gave up, and just dumped more "snow" over

the wires until you couldn't see the "snakes of doom".

(I had to buy much more snow than a typical villager)

 

 

Others expanded their efforts in foam-base making, then

had to score/dig lines and trenches, drill holes, and spend

many hours learning new curse words. Of course, once you

started to make changes, your base started looking like

swiss cheese. Then, the added problem of filling in last year's

holes. Not a hard job, but boring and time stealing. Some

made templates, mock-ups and other elaborate systems to

avoid costly mistakes or do-overs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

(I've received many lessons in "static electricity")

 

It was just SO exhausting, but what choice did we have?

 

 

 

 

 

Well, guess what  -

An engineering company, Etherdyne Technologies, Inc (ETI)

has been working on designing something that could help

the situation, and a few people have seen some prototypes.

 

 

 

Instead of the usual light cord, you just insert a special light

that works with a special sheet underneath.

 

That's all you need to do, and then place the building

anywhere over that sheet . . . and it lights! Plus, you can

change the building's location, anytime and anywhere you want.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

But Wait  . . .  as they say . . .

"There's More"

 

The Village Collector has learned the "more".

Yes, an honest-to-goodness news "Scoop"

 

   

 

Next week there will be an announcement that I believe could

be the greatest thing for villaging since the light bulb.

 

 

This technology is already fully working, and, is here now!

A company named AirBrite has licensed this technology,

and will be announcing it next week!!!

 

AirBrite with wireless technology by ETI

I can't wait to get my hands on this system. As soon as I

try it, I'll be doing a full review for you, right here at TVC.

 

And now  . . .  another look -

 

Place the light over the pad, and it lights.

One cord to the pad and the rest is wireless.

 

MANY BUILDINGS  -  ONE CORD

 

 

 

Christmas Lights without all the hassle?

I'm in Villaging Nirvana !!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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