It wasn’t until the 1920s that reliable Christmas tree lights perfected and mass-marketed. But Christmas tree fires remained common.
Chicago still suffered between 15 and 30 such blazes per year through the 1930s, while Christmas crooner Bing Crosby's North Hollywood mansion was consumed by flames after a string of lights short-circuited in 1943.
But don’t worry – Crosby’s wish for a White Christmas were made true by insurers, as the majority of his $200,000 loss was covered.
Luckily for Crosby, by then the underwriters had started to relent. Most of his $200,000 loss was covered by insurance, a spokesman said.