Christmas CharityThis print from a Victorian scrap album shows the good daughter of the well-to-do family feeding the bare footed daughter of the poor and was as representative of the sentimentalism of the century as the cards picturing large and happy family gatherings.
They were meant to be attractive to the well-to-do, who were re-assured that the decent poor were provided for, at least at Christmas.
An appeal in the Illustrated London News 1890 to aid The Shivering & Suffering Poor of London. Food, coals and clothing are urgently needed for widows and other poor people. For each 10s, subscribed 15 adults or 20 children can have a substantial meal.
Christmas wasnt a time of fun for allThe Victorians threw themselves into charitable works with enthusiasm, giving Christmas boxes - presents of food and money to all the deserving poor of the parish, usually on the day after Christmas.
Snow clearers and crossing sweepers would be examples of the deserving poor.
Street BeggarsAt a period of feasts, when the paupers in the Union Workhouses are embraced in the large circle of our sympathies, and cared for a little more liberally than usual, let us draw a circle around the circle, and include within it the beggars in the streets.
It may be wrong, as a rule, to encourage street beggars by donations of any kind; but Christmas is an exceptional period and though, possibly, in being charitable to all we may be charitable to many worthless persons, the good Will and good Day will consecrate the deed.
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