Library Blog

Holiday Lights

Lighted lamp post with red bow on it with multi-colored lights in background

As we head into the holiday break, let us look at a cultural obsession this time of year: holiday lights.

The advent of electric lights came as an answer to a problem: putting candles in Christmas trees.  A fire hazard was averted when in 1882 Edward Hibberd Johnson had the idea to take some red, white and blue light bulbs and string them together for his tree that he placed right in front of a window for those passing by.

Today there are an estimated 150 million light sets sold in America each year, they light up 80 million homes and consume 6 percent of the national’s electrical load each December. 

With so many holiday lights shining around the country, chances are you are close to an amazing light display.  In the New England area, you can find dozens of public light displays, including one at Roger Williams Park Zoo.

Of course, holiday lights are not just for professionals; neighborhoods across the country are filled with houses decorated in Christmas lights, some understated and some extravagant.  These are some of the best in Rhode Island

Perhaps your favorite display is the simplest.  Your favorite might be the lights that hang on a tree, over a fireplace, or outside the front door.  The lights you see in the place where you will spend the holiday break with friends, family, good food, and a good night’s rest as you recover from a semester of hard work.

No matter where you are, whether the lights shine bright or glimmer peacefully, Happy Holidays and Have a Wonderful Break!

Library Blog