Christmas Was Actually Illegal In Massachusetts Once, Here’s Why…
Listeners of "Slater and Marjo In The Morning" may have heard us mention that Thanksgiving is officially one week away. Both of us love the November holiday very much as it seems to be far less commercialized than Christmas. Black Friday, however, certainly seems to fill those shoes!
Thanksgiving has a lot of history in Massachusetts as Plymouth held the first "one".
We all know the story of the “first Thanksgiving” in Plymouth in 1621, but what happened in the following years? As it turns out, it was not uncommon for authorities to call for a “day of Thanksgiving” at various times throughout a year. -mass.gov
Things have certainly changed over the years in terms of laws, crazy laws, antiquated laws, you get the idea. I mean, at one point, alcohol was illegal in this country (prohibition). That didn't work out to well, but, at that point in time, the U.S. had a SERIOUS drinking problem and it needed to be dealt with.
What about weird laws surrounding one of the most beloved holidays in the country? Yup.
Yes, Christmas Was Once Illegal In Massachusetts, Here's Why...
In 1659, the Massachusetts Bay Colony enacted a law called Penalty for Keeping Christmas. The notion was that such “festivals as were superstitiously kept in other countries” were a “great dishonor of God and offence of others.” Anyone found celebrating Christmas by failing to work, “feasting, or any other way… shall pay for every such offence five shillings.” This would be about $48 today. -mass.gov
That was a long time ago. Enjoy with your family, everyone!