- The Whole Year Round
Here in this country it is hard to imagine Christmas without nativity scenes. Over the centuries many and varied representations have been created of the birth of Baby Jesus, with Joseph and Mary, oxen and donkey in the stable. Back in the Middle Ages, iron was already being processed in our region, and iron was also an important article of trade. During the winter months, the nailsmiths led a meagre life, only earning some extra money by building nativity scenes. Small fired clay figurines (“Loahmmandln”) were lovingly painted, placed onto the mountain of a nativity scene set in a wooden box that was then enclosed within a glass pane. In this way, the box nativity scenes typical of our region, also called nailsmith nativity scenes, came into being.
During the past decades, box nativity scenes have once again become very popular. Numerous clubs have sprung up reviving the old production techniques and offering box nativity scene building courses. The Christmas story with the birth of Jesus Christ is still the central focus, but these nativity scenes also leave room enough for the representation of regional stories and local personalities.