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Who invented Christmas lights?

As I was deciding whether or not I needed lights on my Christmas tree, I wondered who was the first person to put lights on a Christmas tree. Turns out, Edward Hibbard Johnson, a former employer, but current employee of Thomas Edison, hand strung 80 lights into a strand and hung them on a Christmas tree in 1882 (just three years after the first viable lightbulb was invented).


The spectacle was detailed by a reporter for Detroit's Post and Tribune who said, "It was brilliantly lighted with...eighty lights in all encased in these dainty glass eggs, and about equally divided between white, red and blue....One can hardly imagine anything prettier.”


Turns out, the the following years, he added more lights, and then again, more lights... sounds like the "tradition" of upstaging the last year/person was started from the very beginning.




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