Christmas trees on display at Historic Jefferson College

Published 12:00 am Sunday, December 12, 2010

Historic Jefferson College, located north of Natchez in Washington, is continuing its tradition of hosting the annual Celebration of Christmas Trees.

During the first two weeks of December, more than 700 little folks and big folks from the surrounding area journeyed to our state-owned historic site to decorate 20 trees set up in the West Wing and Prospere Hall.

Before their visit to Historic Jefferson College, students have been busy making their special ornaments to decorate a tree bought especially for their school or group.

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The staff of Historic Jefferson College invites the public to view the students’ creative decoration of the trees during Dec. 11-23 and 28-30.

This year marks the 30th year that Historic Jefferson College has invited area groups to participate in this program, which includes a short history lesson on Washington (the former capital of the Mississippi Territory), a discussion of the beginnings of the Victorian Christmas Tree tradition (including Clement Moore’s ’Twas the Night Before Christmas) and refreshments.

Without our generous sponsors, we would not be able to host this annual tradition. We would like to thank all the businesses and individuals who donated time, money and supplies to make this event happen.

If you are interested in participating in the Celebration of Christmas Trees event next year as a volunteer assistant or sponsor, or if you’d like your group to come decorate, please contact me at 601-442-2901 or

Sponsored by the Mississippi Department of Archives and History, Historic Jefferson College is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

The site will be closed Dec. 24-27. Historic Jefferson College is a tranquil, peaceful place and we invite everyone to take time out from your busy holiday schedule to visit and see the trees before they are taken down on Dec. 30.

Kay McNeil is the historian and event coordinator at Historic Jefferson College.