An unidentified girl is pleased to discover a doll among her Christmas presents in this 1955 photo from the Abbotsford Sumas Matsqui News. P4511/ The Reach Gallery Museum Archives

PHOTOS: Christmas in 1950-era Abbotsford

Photos at the Reach Gallery Museum Archives document Christmas festivities 70 years ago

Traditions are, by definition, slow to change. So it might not be a surprise to confirm that, while some of the hairstyles and clothing choices of the 1950s have gone out of fashion, many of the elements of Christmastime have persisted over the last seven decades.

These photos at the Reach Gallery Museum Archives document Christmas festivities 70 years ago. Find more at

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A group of children decorates the Christmas Tree in St. Matthews parish hall in 1958. The kids’ parents were clebrating a Social Credit by-election victory. The photo appeared the Abbotsford Sumas Matsqui News. From left to right: Darlene Krause, Jackie Rempel, Donald Straight, DeVon Adrian, David Straight, Sharlene Bartsch, Goldy Patterson and Wayne Patterson P5767/ The Reach Gallery Museum Archives

A boy sits on his new tricycle in this 1955 photo from the Abbotsford Sumas Matsqui News. P4512/ The Reach Gallery Museum Archives

Pay-Less Store advertised these toys, which cost $1.69 each, in a 1958 advertisement in the Abbotsford Sumas Matsqui News. P5956/The Reach Gallery Museum Archives

Glen and Eileen Adrian (right), and daughter, Cynthia, held the lucky ticket in Overwaitea’s 1954 Christmas television set give-away. Phil Swift (far left) and meat department manager Jim Hamilton presented the new TV. P5983/The Reach Gallery Museum Archives

A car dressed up for the 1955 Christmas parade sat in front of the Royal Bank on Essendene Avenue. P6240/The Reach Gallery Museum Archives

Sunday school pupils (with the help of some adults) of Peace Lutheran church presented a bilingual version of the Christmas story in English and German in 1958. Trained by Margetha Urban, who wrote the script (but not the original screenplay), Leroy Penner played Joseph, Gretel Pausch played Mary, and Linda Forstbauer played an angel. P31345/The Reach Gallery Museum Archives

The 1951 Matsqui Elementary Christmas Pageant featured a playlet called Jack Frost’s Realm directed by Jessie Rottluff. About 200 parents and friends attended the two-hour concert which also included other Christmas plays, choir numbers and drills. P4464/The Reach Gallery Museum Archives

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