Although the ‘Christmas Tree’ had briefly appeared in England during the reign of Queen Charlotte, it finally became a main Christmas tradition during Queen Victoria’s reign. Just like Queen Charlotte, Victoria’s husband, Albert, was born in Germany and brought with him the tradition of Christmas Tree in the 1840's.
Most decorations were hand made. Popular items included gilded walnuts and candies. Dried fruits (oranges, cranberries, and popcorn) were strung together to form garlands. Some trees had small toys placed in the branches. Gingerbread was also hung on the tree as decoration.
A Victorian tradition were paper cornucopias filled with fruits and nuts, then nestled in the boughs of the trees. Making the decorations and then trimming the tree was a family event .
Beneath the tree, the children would create 'Putz' villages (German for 'putting things together to create a scene’.) Some were as simple as grass and moss with sticks making fences to the more elaborate with paper houses, candy decorated 'yards', and fluffy white 'snow'. In the early 1900's mass produced 'Putz Villages' could be bought.