Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Today in history, December 6

In 1884 today, the 3300 pound marble capstone was placed atop the Washington Monument signifying the completion of the physical structure that took 36 years to build. A 100-ounce aluminum tip, seen being positioned in the photo, bears inscriptions on each of its four faces.
The north face looks toward the White House and bears the inscription of the capstone’s joint commission. Facing the Jefferson Memorial, the south face bears the names of the chief engineer and architect, along with his assistants. To the Lincoln Memorial, the west face in inscribed with the date the cornerstone and capstone were laid. The east side of the monument faces the Capitol and is inscribed with Laus Deo, Praise to God.

Today is also celebrated as Saint Nicholas’ Day. Among his many legends, he is said to have saved three children caught in a vat of vinegar brine. To remember this, Christians often give large crisp pickles to each other today which must explain the reason behind the Christmas tree ornament designed as a pickle. Interesting. Do you have a pickle to hang on your tree?


Carol in Oregon said...

I have to tell you - I incorporated reading the Christian Almanac in our homeschool schedule (thanks to you!) and Collin and I have enjoyed it. Such a wealth of quotes, sitting on my bookshelf unread.....

Seasonal Soundings said...

Wonderful! I have learned so much from using it this year and thought about re-doing it again next, but I'm going to use The One Year Book of Christian History. Then I'll re-do CA in '07. Glad you like it as well. It's full of stuff, isn't it! And the quotes..oh, I love the quotes!

ginabina said...

Yes, we have a pickle ornament. We hang it and then it gets moved around the tree from Dec. 6 until Christmas.

On Christmas morning the first one to find it gets a special extra gift from St. Nicholas (or gets to open presents first). It's tough to see on a decorated green tree!

There are several versions of this tradition. We incorporated it into our Christmas morning fun after a good friend gave us the ornament as a gift and passed on the tradition from her family.