The Christmas tree traces it origins back to the early Romans, who used them in the winter festival of Saturnalia, a feast that honored the god Saturn. During the middle ages evergreen trees known as the paradise trees were decorated with apples. Most historians believe that the apples were actually a symbol of Christianity to remind people of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden.
Today Alsace is located in France, but in the 1500’s it was located in Germany, and records have been found indicating trees were sold placed inside homes. There were even regulations declaring no one could have more than one tree per household and trees weren’t allowed to be more then 8 shoe lengths in height.
The founder of the Lutheran Church, Martin Luther is credited with being the first to decorate a Christmas Tree in the sixteenth century. He was walking through the forest at night and saw the twinkling of stars through the trees branches. He later tried to describer the scene to others and used candles to simulate the effect. There are written records confirming trees were decorated with other items like roses and candy in 1605.
Photo credit: Lida Rose