WASHINGTON - As you celebrate Christmas Sunday, here are some fun facts about the holiday you might not know about:
- In 1836 Alabama became the first U.S. state to recognize Christmas as an official holiday.
- In 1907 Oklahoma became the last state to make it official.
- In 1926, the first singing jingle played over the radio airwaves on Christmas Eve. It was "Have you tried your Wheaties."
- A Jewish man wrote "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree" and a few other classic Christmas songs.
- The real St. Nicholas lived in Turkey where he was a bishop in the early 4th century.
- The Dutch turned the bishop into a Christmas gift-giving guy. When Dutch settlers migrated to the U.S. they brought the St. Nick tradition with them. Eventually, he eventually became known at Santa Claus.
- President Theodore Roosevelt was a bit of a scrooge when it came to Christmas trees. As a conservationist he banned Christmas trees in the White House. Some say his kids would sneak Christmas trees into their rooms, against his wishes.
- Germany made the first artificial Christmas tree out of goose feathers dyed green.
- Electric lights for Christmas trees were first used in 1895.
- "It's a Wonderful Life" appears on TV more often than any other holiday movie.
- Rudolph the Red_Nosed Reindeer was actually created by department store Montgomery Ward in the late 1930s for a holiday promotion.
- The poinsettia plan was brought into the United States from Mexico by Joel Poinsett in the early 1800s.
- In Greek, X means Christ, which is how the word "X-mas" came to be.
- In Mexico, wearing red underwear on New Year's Eve is said to bring new love in the upcoming year.
- And the saying really wasn't "Bah Humbug." It was "Bah Christmas."
WTOP's Kathy Stewart contributed to this report. Follow WTOP on Twitter.
(Copyright 2011 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)
Clothes have a starring role at the Cannes Film Festival. (Photos)
A fallen police officer's daughter gets a swarm of support. (Photos)
She can sing, but can she act? Jewel takes on a famous role.
The Galapagos Islands are now just a click away. (Photos)