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a field of Christmas trees all in rows
A Christmas Tree farm in Suffield, Connecticut, 2011. Carol M. Highsmith, photographer.

O Christmas Tree

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cover with six photos one shows a man with the tree he cut down, one shows a man standing on a cart with cut trees pulled by two horses, one shows a group of two women and one man choosing a tree, one shows two women decorating a tree one shows three kids playing with their toys in front of a decorated tree, and one shows just a tree on its side
New-York Tribune, December 23, 1906.

According to the National Christmas Tree Association, about 25-30 million real Christmas trees sold in the U.S. every year with 350 million real Christmas trees currently growing on Christmas tree farms in the U.S. That is a lot of trees.

How does that compare to 1900? This Arizona Silver Belt article provides a clue:

“Uncle Sam leads the world in the use of Christmas trees. Statistics compiled from carefully authenticated information show that fully three and a half million are required to meet the great American demand.”

As for prices in 2022, looking at Washington, D.C., a rather expensive market, 4 – 5 foot trees are $40 – $60, 5 – 6 foot trees are $50 – $60, and 6 – 7 foot trees are $125 – $175. Back in 1900, that Arizona Silver Belt article does talk price:

“The price which the farmers receive for their Christmas trees, though small for individual trees, amounts to a good sum when the large quantity is taken into consideration. For small trees, five to six feet tall, such trees as would be used by families in moderate circumstances, five cents is the usual price. A tree from six to ten feet tall will bring from ten to fifteen cents, according to its symmetry. The five cent trees are sold for twenty-five cents in the city markets, while a fifteen cent tree often brings a dollar or more, so the jobbers or retailers make handsome profits on all they can sell.”

a family of 5 in front of a decorated tree; the father on the far left followed by two children one is a girl, the mother, and then the son
A family at Christmas. National Photo Company.

If you are interested in other Christmas statistics the National Christmas Tree Association has additional statistics on trees, the Census Bureau provides some general statistics based on data they gather, and the National Retail Federation has data for winter holidays.

The Library has many more images of Christmas trees so please, have a look; some of the older images are really great. Chronicling America has many articles and advertisements that are Christmas related including a 1956 piece on Christmas tree farms, a 1962 article looking at growing trees, and a 1957 piece on cutting your own tree farms.

An man shows a tree ornament to a child on his lap while a doll in white sits on the floor next to an older boy in front of a Christmas tree with a model train car in his lap and tracks laid on the floor
Secretary Davis. National Photo Company, 1921.

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