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Did you know?
  • The original Rudolph did not have a red nose. In that day and age, red noses were seen as an indicator of chronic alcoholism and Montgomery Ward didn’t want him to look like a drunkard. To complete the original picture, he was almost named Reginald or Rollo.
  • The Christmas wreath was originally hung as a symbol of Jesus. The holly represents his crown of thorns and the red berries the blood he shed.
  • The three traditional colors of most Christmas decorations are red, green and gold. Red symbolizes the blood of Christ, green symbolized life and rebirth, and gold represents light, royalty and wealth.
  • Tinsel was invented in 1610 in Germany and was once made of real silver.
  • The oldest artificial Christmas trees date back to the late 1800s and were made of green raffia (think grass hula skirts) or dyed goose feathers. Next the Addis Brush Company used their machinery that wove toilet brushes to create pine-like branches for artificial Christmas trees that were less flammable and could hold heavier decorations.
  • ‘Jingle Bells’ – the popular Christmas song was composed by James Pierpont in Massachusetts, America. It was, however, written for thanksgiving and not Christmas.
  • Coca-Cola was the first company that used Santa Claus during the winter season for promotion.
  • Hallmark introduced their first Christmas cards in 1915.
  • The first recorded date of Christmas being celebrated on December 25th was in 336, during the time of the Roman Emperor Constantine. A few years later, Pope Julius I officially declared that the birth of Jesus would be celebrated on that day.
  • Santa Claus's sleigh is led by eight reindeer: Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Dunder (variously spelled Donder and Donner), and Blixem (variously spelled Blixen and Blitzen), with Rudolph being a 20th-century inclusion.
  • Outdoor Christmas lights on homes evolved from decorating the traditional Christmas tree and house with candles during the Christmas season. Lighting the tree with small candles dates back to the 17th century and originated in Germany before spreading to Eastern Europe.
  • That big, jolly man in the red suit with a white beard didn’t always look that way. Prior to 1931, Santa was depicted as everything from a tall gaunt man to a spooky-looking elf. He has donned a bishop's robe and a Norse huntsman's animal skin. When Civil War cartoonist Thomas Nast drew Santa Claus for Harper's Weekly in 1862, Santa was a small elflike figure who supported the Union. Nast continued to draw Santa for 30 years, changing the color of his coat from tan to the red he’s known for today.
  • Christmas 2018 countdown has already begun. Will you be ready???
  • Why do we love Christmas? It's all about the traditions. In this chaotic world we can miss the "good old days." Christmas reminds us of that time.


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About MattKat

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    Senior Member
  • Birthday 12/01/1994

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  • My favorite Christmas story
  • Location
    Des Plaines, Illinois, USA
  • Biography
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  • About my display

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  1. Found this guy for sale recently. Looks more like Harold Gale than Hamberger, but still definitely for this crowd lol. Would love to have him but they're asking $800 for him which seems a little steep to me.
  2. This maybe a long shot, but did u have any more christmas stuff available? Snowflakes? In downers grove

  3. (I tried posting this earlier but I guess it didn't work) A quick google search turned up tons of pictures of their displays and it looks like there's at least a few animated pieces at this store. I'm sure there's more out of the shot as well. I've been meaning to go visit during Christmas time for years but just never have...
  4. Not made by Hamberger, but I ran across this the other day in case anyone was interested. I keep meaning to visit Bass Pro at Christmas time, especially after seeing this... Who knows what else they use! https://chicago.craigslist.org/chc/cbd/5332353839.html
  5. Was doing some electrical work for some neighbors that I decorate for and while in the basement following conduit from room to room, I came across these guys stored away in a closet. They said they used to move but died out years ago and have been sitting down there ever since. Obviously I asked about acquiring them and he said he's going to ask his wife if she's willing to sell them. Apparently these are Harold Gale pieces. Pretty neat! The soldier has a blue top hat that he wears that's in his box as well.
  6. Well interesting news! I ended up speaking with the gentleman that put together this display and he said that he actually made the entire thing himself based on a Hamberger catalog page! He stumped a bunch of us with his craftsmanship it seems. He said that he would have loved to buy a prefabricated set, but the price was ridiculous for a residential display. I've attached the catalog pages and some more old photographs of the decorations to compare and realize that the house is actually homemade of wood paneling. What a neat display!
  7. I know the sleigh is from a Poloron blow mold set, and I'm pretty sure the elf is from Hamberger, but is the rest of the pieces in the scene from them as well?
  8. Thanks to a member here, I finally got my first Hamberger piece! He's currently a bit rough and mildly creepy, but I'll take care of all of that soon enough! Stay tuned for updates!
  9. Also, if anyone has any of the pieces from these sets, I'd love to see any/all of the pictures and/or videos that you'd be willing to share of them. Thanks again! Keep up the awesome posts!
  10. Holy. Crap. I just spent the better part of the day reading through this entire 45 page thread and wow... I've actually known Darrid for a while now and have been a member here since god knows when, but never just really ventured over to this side as much as I should. I went through a blow mold phase for several years and still pick them up as I come across them but I've sold off most of that collection and now and have moved into the mechanical/commercial displays... The good stuff! After reading through this entire thread and looking at the pictures (or what few remain) I've about doubled my knowledge of these figures in a day! I've actually got some super secret plans I've been working on for this year's display that I feel would go over very well here, but it's still in the planning phases and need some help. I've been looking everywhere for the following types of pictures of the mechanisms in these units but only have the one I took myself. (Ironically while with Darrid a couple weeks ago lol) But if anyone has any of their pieces dismantled at all, I'd really appreciate if you could snap a quick couple shots of the linkages and mechs inside and share here! I figured this has got to be the best place for such a request! I'm trying to see how the various motions are created and converted from a rotating shaft into the various motions. I love everything that's been posted so far and can't wait to see everyone's newest treasures to come!
  11. So now that Christmas is over and I took all my lights back home over break, my dorm room is looking a little plain. So I started thinking, and decided that I wanted to make a wireframe type rendition of the neon signs with the school's logo that all the bars have downtown to hang on my wall. I suppose I could draw the design out on a piece of masonite or coro and poke the lights though or something, but I wanted it to be a little more streamlined and neater looking than that method since it's going to be viewed up close in my room. Does anyone have any tips or ideas on how to make about a two foot tall version of the picture below?
  12. I too hate the look of led's. I'd love to switch over to them but I don't think they look very merry at all. By the way, I can't see the pictures:(
  13. I'm not big with the inflatables anymore, I mainly just use my big 20 foot snowman now, (And might be selling him soon if anyone's interested) but I do service and deploy several smaller 8 foot ones to some smaller displays that I set up each year and rotate them through. One of these was a 6 foot snowglobe that I'm going to be retiring and dismantling sometime soon and figured that somebody could probably use the "snow" pellets out of it before I throw them away/make a mess in my house if they lost some out of their globe for whatever reason. I think Yardinflatables does sell new bags of them, but I figured if anyone in the Chicago area needs some, I'd check on here first before I threw them away.
  14. Yeah, that's a fiberglass piece for commercial (Or cool residential) displays. Is that yours??
  15. I am on the notification list for those, I just didn't know if/when they would be getting them in. Thanks for pointing that out though, I didn't see that they're supposed to come in this month!
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