** Christmas in Germany Christmas presents

Christmas in Germany: Presents

Figure 1.--Here we see a German family at Christmas 1932. The four little boys are looking over their Christmas loot. The centerpiece is of course a great castle. My guess is that it was a huge hit with the boys, a perfect certerpiece for their toy soldiers. I'm not sure what uniform jacket their father is wearing.

Christmas for children meant not only lots of goodies, cakes and candies, but also toys--all kind of toys. And no country made better toys than the Germans. The Germans not only made toys for Grman children, but exported them all over the world. We see all kinds of toys in the photographic record. Teddy bears and other stuffed animals were popular and Steiff teddies became the standard on which all bears were subsequently judged. We see blocks, toy vehickes (cars, trucks, boats, and plans) pull animals, toy soldiers, toy guns, puppets, trains and much more. In particular we note doll houses for the girls and castles for the boys toy soldiers. Of course boys also got clothes for Christmas, but it was the toys that were the real prizes. It is fascinting to see the period toys revealed over time in the photographic record.

A German reader writes, "This is a nice photo of a German Christmas day with children and the gifts which they got from the "Christkind" (certainly, in fact, from parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles etc.). Castles were especially popular, even in later years. And you still find them in toy shops before Christmas. I myself, born 1935, never got one. But building villages with blocks, wooden or from my "Steinbaukasten" - earlier I wrote about it -) always included a church, a castle, town wall, houses etc. It was not related to thinking of war. Many of the villages and towns in Germany and other European countries have churches and castles of the kind shown in your photo - and a city wall around, in former days guarding the population."


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Created: 2:06 AM 9/22/2008
Last updated: 5:05 AM 9/25/2008