What does December mean?

Another year is almost over. It went by in a flash! December is all about Christmas although many stores were already in Christmas mode before Halloween.

I still remember the “good old days” when the Christmas rush did not start until the middle of December and, in the far off distant past when I was a child in England, we didn’t even decorate the tree until Christmas Eve – not over a month before the 25th!

One interesting thing I have discovered about December throughout history is the fact that many firsts seem to have happened in December and most of them on the first day of the month. Here are just a few examples:

  • In 1641 on December 1st, Massachusetts became the first colony to give recognition to slavery.
  • In 1835 on December 1st, Hans Christian Anderson published his first book of fairy tales.
  • And did you know that in 1878 the first telephone was installed in the White House on December 1st
  • Or that in 1887 on December 1st Sherlock Holmes first appeared in print in A Study in Scarlet? 
  • In 1906 on December 1st the world’s first cinema opened in Paris. It was called the Cinema Omnia Pathé.
  • On December 1st, 1919, Lady Nancy Astor was sworn in as the first female member of the British parliament.
  • In 1921 the first American helium-filled dirigible made its first flight, and one year later, on December 1st, Captain Turner of the RAF was the first to fly over the US skywriting the words “Hello USA.”
  • In 1930, Ruth Nichols became the first woman pilot to cross the North American continent. By December 1st, 1959, we were receiving the first colour photograph of earth from outer space!
  • On December 1st, 1969, the US government held its first draft lottery since the Second World War. 
  • Jumping to 1991, on December 1st of that year France beat the USA in the 80th Davis Cup (3-1). This was France’s first Davis Cup since 1932. 
  • And in 1997, controversial Howard Stern premiered his first radio show in Davenport, Iowa on KORB 93.5 FM.
  • In 1987, digging began under the English Channel to link England with France. In 1990 on December 1st, the British and French workers met half-way and the “Chunnel” was no longer a mere dream but a reality.
  • And for all those who love silly trivia, the game of BINGO was invented by Edwin S. Lowe on the 1st of December in 1929. 

So it seems that the month of December certainly began in a big way on many years throughout history, but for me personally I like to think of December 1st as the official first day of the Christmas Season whatever the year might be.

The rest of the month of December is all about Christmas, a time that is not always happy for many people who have lost loved ones throughout the past year. May your December be full of joy and happy memories.

One week later, we will be celebrating a New Year when once again there will be new opportunities, new challenges, some joys, and some sadness to experience.

Whatever your beliefs or traditions for this New Year’s Eve, I would like to wish each one of you a very happy and healthy new year.  May the year 2024 be peaceful and full of joy and prosperity for all. Thank you for your support in reading my blog and my books. I appreciate you all.