It all began in San Francisco back in 1891 with Captain Joseph McFee. The Captain was trying to figure out a way to provide meals for families in need, especially during the holidays, and so he recalled "Simpson's Pot" -- a large pot for people to toss in charitable donations that was used in Liverpool, England.

The first Salvation Army Kettle Pot was strategically placed by Captain McFee at the Oakland ferry landing, with the hopes of getting donations from those going to and from the ferry boats. 

Over 100 years have passed, and the Salvation Army is still collecting donations during the holidays, and throughout the year.  Not only do they try to give a Christmas meal for families in need, but today the Salvation Army also provides clothing, shelter, toys, financial assistance and counseling year-round.

During the holiday season, the Salvation Army does their best to make sure that no families go without food, and no child without presents for Christmas Day.

Fun Fact: By signing up to be a bell ringer during the holidays, you are actually an official Salvation Army campanologist -- one that practices or is skilled in the art of bell ringing.

~Keith Kelly