Q&A on the news

Q: Where did the Christmas tree originate?

—Eddie Webster, Dallas

A: The first decorated Christmas tree was in Riga, Latvia,  in 1510, according to the Chesterfield, Mo.-based National Christmas Tree Association. It was decorated with cookies, sweets, paper and fruit. A couple decades later, in 1531, the first Christmas tree lots began in German cities. The decorations changed to ribbon, books, food, lace and other items by the 1600s. In 1777, the association says the Christmas tree tradition was brought to America by Hessian troops. The first tree lot in the United States opened in New York City in 1851. The White House’s first Christmas tree was in 1856.

Q: Does Tiger Woods have any brothers or sisters, and did he attend Stanford on a scholarship?

—Shirley Zieve, Sandy Springs

A: Woods, born Eldrick Tont Woods on Dec. 30, 1975 in California, is the only child of the late Earl Woods and wife Kultida. He enrolled at Stanford in the mid-1990s on a golf scholarship and left college to turn professional in 1996, when he was 20. Woods, 36, has won 14 major tournaments, four short of Jack Nicklaus’ record of 18. His first major victory was the 1997 Masters.

Lori Johnston wrote this column. Do you have a question about the news? We’ll try to get the answer. Call 404-222-2002 or e-mail q&a@ajc.com (include name, phone and city).