Though the specifics of the celebration of Christmas may have changed over the last few hundred years, there are some essential components almost universally present. The Christmas tree is one, present in America since the 19th century, and music is another - part of Christmas since time immemorial.
This photo was apparently taken in 1894 at Fort Custer, and depicts two soldiers and a woman playing musical instruments next to a Christmas tree. The men are playing guitars, while the woman, eyes closed as if in a reverie, fingers what appears to be a mandolin. One of the men sits in a rocking chair, while the other sits on a wicker stool. On the wall are a handful of photographs. The mood seems, if not somber, reverent.
Wouldn't it be fascinating to be able to hear their song? As none of them appear to be singing, it may be a song without lyrics. Could it be Greensleeves or a traditional hymn?
Be sure to click on the picture to zoom in on the fine details, and we hope you and yours have a very Merry Christmas this year.
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