So I didn’t get to finish my Advent calendar for this year either… although if I had followed a religious and not a commercial version of the calendar, I would have had a couple fewer days to post! Ah! But that’s okay!
I did have something that I was keeping for December 24 though that I will share today.
This year I went to Fredericksburg, TX to see the lighting of the Christmas tree and the Christmas pyramid. Some of you, like me, but probably not all of you, might wonder what a Christmas pyramid is.
Texas has a rich German heritage and Fredericksburg is one example:
Fredericksburg was founded on May 8, 1846 by German immigrants under the Society for the Protection of German Immigrants in Texas. John O. Meusebach chose the location for the second of the Society’s colonies four miles north of the Pedernales River between two creeks. He named the settlement Friedrichsburg (later changed to Fredericksburg) to honor Prince Frederick of Prussia. Settlers received lots in town with an additional 10 acre lot outside of town. The colonists planted corn, built storehouses to protect their provisions and trade goods, and prepared for the arrival of more immigrants, who came throughout the summer. By 1850, census records stated that the town had 754 residents, and Gillespie County had 1,235 residents.
According to the 2010 Census, Fredericksburg had 10,530 inhabitants in 2010. The city is located about 78 miles west of Austin.
Christmas pyramids are a kind of German Christmas decorations:
that have their roots in the folklore and customs of the Ore Mountain region of Germany, but which have become popular internationally. They comprise a decorated pyramidal outer frame with candle holders and a central carousel with a rotor at the top which is driven by warm air from the lit candles. The carousel is decorated with nativity scenes and other Christmas figures such as angels and wise men, as well as worldly motifs such as mining folk and forest scenes.
And according to this website:
Christmas pyramids originated in the Erzgebirge more than 200 years ago as a symbol of light, reflecting the miners’ wish for a safe return home from the darkness and danger of the mines. As mining died off, some miners began woodcarving, originally a hobby after a hard day’s work in the mines, as a full-time occupation. These wonderful creations were a genuine folk tradition.
Christmas pyramids are the precursors of the modern Christmas tree. As the popularity of Christmas trees increased during the 19th century, craftsmen of the Erzgebirge created these man-made wooden trees in the shape of a pyramid.
And Fredericksburg has a giant Christmas Pyramid! See for yourself.
I hope you’ll enjoy these pictures and videos as you prepare for New Year’s Eve, even though they are a bit late! Of everything I have seen this holiday season, this was the most beautiful Christmas illumination and moment.