In the early days of Calvin Coolidge’s presidency, a new White House tradition was born with the decorating of a “National Community Christmas Tree” in 1923. Since 1927, the annual lighting of the tree has also been accompanied by a presidential message. Those addresses, many of which are collected here, have provided an intriguing snapshot into the soul of two enduring institutions: The Christmas holiday and the American nation.
From the initial, decidedly brief messages that “Silent Cal” Coolidge presented at the end of the 1920s to those given by Franklin Delano Roosevelt in the midst of World War II as well as Ronald Reagan’s message expressing solidarity with the people of Poland, which charted the beginning of the end of the Cold Car, the Presidents of the United States have marked the time through these inspiring messages of hope and goodwill.
This collection of Christmas messages consists of at least one address from each president since Calvin Coolidge. Reading them, we can trace the history of the United States from the Roaring Twenties through the Great Depression, World War II, the Cold Wa, the brief eras of Camelot and Watergate, the oil crisis and the fall of Communism, eras of economic book and recession, and the aftereffects of terrorism. Through all of these historic events, the lasting message of Christmas shines bright: We look to Christmas to remind us of what we can be—what is possible when we unite in hope, faith, and forgiveness.
In Emilee’s opinion:
Christmas Greetings from the Presidents was the perfect book to read especially during the election. Since the world is divided and there is controversy everywhere I was grateful for the opportunity to review this book. It made me realize again that although many people have different opinions, there is one thing in common which is the true meaning of Christmas. I loved that a tradition began during President Coolidge’s administration. I loved that they decorated a tree and brought the nation a meaningful message year after year. I’ve always respected my elders and will continue to do so. I admire great leaders especially President Reagan. He was humble and I loved reading his Presidential message, ” Some celebrate Christmas as the birthday of a great and good philosopher and teacher. Others of us believe in the divinity of the child born in Bethlehem, that he was and is the promised Prince of Peace. Yes, we’ve questioned why he who could perform miracles chose to come among us as a helpless babe, but maybe that was his first miracle, his first great lesson that we should learn to care for one another.” He continues by saying, “The glow of the Christmas tree is a reflection of the love Jesus taught us.” I loved his message! All of the Presidents gave thoughtful messages that hopefully will bring peace and love to the world. I also loved seeing the beautiful pictures of the trees and the Presidents families. I definitely recommend this book to everyone and thought it would make a great Christmas gift.
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