Skip to content

Remember This: Halifax's first Christmas tree

The family living on an estate on Coburg Road is credited with bringing the tradition of Christmas trees to Halifax
112717-christmas tree-AdobeStock_90623237
(stock image)

The family living on an estate on Coburg Road is credited with bringing the tradition of Christmas trees to Halifax.

Historian Blair Beed says Coburg Cottage was built in 1816 by William Pryor, a successful merchant in the West Indies trade.

"His wife was German and she is considered the person who first introduced the German tradition, and the Royal tradition of taking a Christmas tree into their home around 1846," Beed told NEWS 95.7's The Rick Howe Show.

"It would have been just a bough they would have taken into the home, put it on the table and put candles and presents and things around it."

It's thought this was only the second time a Christmas tree was used in Canada, the first happened in Quebec.

Beed said friends of the family would have arrived by sleigh to the estate and been impressed by the decoration.

"That's in the days when Halifax was concentrated right downtown, and the wealthy, who were farmers, lived outside the downtown."

Christmas trees became more mainstream a couple of years later during Queen Victoria's reign. 

"Queen Victoria and her husband Prince Albert were shown in the illustrated news of the day with their Christmas tree and their children," Beed explained.

He said the Coburg Cottage still stands at the end of Coburg Rd.




Comments


Meghan Groff

About the Author: Meghan Groff

Born in Michigan, raised in Ontario, schooled in Indiana and lives in Nova Scotia; Meghan is the community editor for HalifaxToday.ca.
Read more
Rogers Media
6080 Young Street Halifax, NS, B3K 5L2 © 2006-2021 Rogers Media. All rights reserved.