Christmas on the Common

Boston’s holiday season started in full swing with the annual Christmas tree lighting last Thursday, December 2, on Boston Common. The City and private individuals have paid for the lighting of the trees on Boston Common since 1910. According to Boston legend, Mayor John Fitzgerald brought the first Christmas tree to the Common to be lit as a public celebration. Christmas tree lighting ceremonies have occurred through the ages, marking the beginning of the holiday season.

Since 1972, the people of Nova Scotia have given the people of Boston a tree as a thank-you for their aid to the City of Halifax on December 6, 1917. That year, a munitions ship collided with another ship in Halifax Harbor, creating an explosion that destroyed most of the city. Massachusetts’ residents were the first relief workers to make it through a terrible snowstorm to aid the city.  This gift is a fantastic way to commemorate the history and partnership between the two cities.

Post your photos of the Christmas tree on our Facebook page!

2 thoughts on “Christmas on the Common

  1. Philip West Mallard II

    Read your article about the Nova Scotia annual historic gift of a Christmas Tree.
    It is given in gratitude for aid sent when a MUNITIONS not MUTINOUS ship exploded in Halifax Harbor. Believe me if it were a “mutinous ship” there was no sign of mutiny after the explosion for it literally took out the harbor killing all those aboard and who were at the harbor at the time. We, Boston- our leaders- after learning of the tragic event, had a relief train carrying needed aid enroute and arriving on scene in a matter of hours. Boston/Gloucester/Nova Scotia relationship at that time in history was very close due to our common ties to the sea. Indeed my Grandmother Anna Clarke (that’s with an “e”) emigrated to Salem from Nova Scotia- she was chided and known as Arthur West Mallard’s “Herringchocker bride.” [NOVI’s were called “Herringchockers”] seemingly a derisive characterization but in truth they as our own seafearers were most highly respected by all who knew them.

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