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Santa and Rudolph

Updated on June 29, 2022
Joe Andover profile image

Married for 48 years, Ken and his wife have 3 children and 2 grandchildren. Now retired, he worked in logistics and as a trumpet player.

How "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" was written.

(As I'd tell the story to my grand-children:)

My curious grandkids were asking me a flurry of questions and I was doing my best to keep up.

{ How old is the story Grandpa?} The story about Rudolph was written back in 1939...76 years ago! That's a long time ago. What? No, I didn't write it. I'm not that old yet guys. No, the man who wrote Rudolph's story was named Robert L. May. He worked for the Montgomery Ward Department store.That was the best store to go to back then. Every year they used to give away hundreds of coloring books to all the kids that came to see Santa.

Montgomery Ward wanted someone that worked for them to come up with a Christmas story that year, because they were trying to save money. If they didn't have to buy all those coloring books that they handed out ,they thought that would save them allot of money.every year. That's when Robert May came up with the idea of a story about Rudolph that we still know today.( It is sad to mention that Montgomery Ward went out of business in 2001.) I bet Mr. May would never have believed that his story would last all these years and that it'd even lead to a popular children's song and a cartoon for TV.

Some in interesting tidbits

After that book became so popular, a man by the name of Johnny Marks wrote the Rudolph song. He even was Mr. May's brother-in-law ! It's remarkable that the story and song became so popular over the years ! Johnny Marks didn't finish writing the song until 10 years after the story was written !

Then later that same year in 1949, Gene Autry a cowboy with a TV show, sang the song. Back then,Gene Autry had his own Melody Ranch radio show that was heard weekly over the CBS Radio Network. Plus people knew him because he also made 93 movies. Because he was so popular, his record made Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer the second all-time best selling Christmas single record, with over 30 million records sold.

I remember watching the cartoon show on TV when I was little. Do you know when it first came on TV? .... way back in 1964. And I was only 10 years old, just a bit older than you guys are now. And I couldn't believe this, but ‘Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer’ was actually filmed in Japan? Yep! I looked this up on the Internet and found an article published on a site called "The FW." 1 And, do you know why Rudolph's voice is so high on the cartoon? That's because the producers hired a woman named Billie Mae Richards to speak for Rudolph's television voice.2

The End...May it go on forever!

(I encourage my wife to go shopping because it's not in my top 1,000 things to do list.)

You just go and finish your shopping. I'll take the grand-kids over to that petting area for Rudolph while you finish up and then we'll meet up back here. I know they're anxious to go see Rudolph and Santa. See you in about an hour.

Come on kids, lets go see Rudolph and Santa ! But hold my hand and stay together cause it's very crowded here. I know you're excited to be at the Christmas Fair, but there's allot of people and I don't want you two getting lost. Let's go over to the petting area first. It doesn't seem too crowded there. And please be careful and don't stick your fingers into the reindeer's mouth!!!

Look over here ! There they are ! It's Santa's eight reindeer! And look!, there's Rudolph! Wow, it's really Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer! And there's Santa. Looks like he's going inside the building to see all the boys and girls. You guys will get to see him too!

Well, enough story telling, now for the fun part! You guys will get to pet Rudolph and the other reindeer, then see Santa and then we'll all get some hot chocolate with Grandma when she comes back from shopping! We'll have fun !!! Huh, what's that sweetie? {Can't we go to McDonald's instead, Grandpa?} Noooooooo, we can't go to McDonald's instead! Geez's the Christmas season. Christmas is when we should celebrate with our family, it's about the spirit of love, kindness, giving and sharing. Believe me, it's the memories that you have and the traditions that you have with your family that makes Christmas so special. Someday, when you get older, I hope that this day will be a special memory for you. Then you'll be able tell your grandkids about the story of Rudolph and Santa.

It's so noisy in here, I couldn't hear you. {Would you be with us in case we forget parts of the story Grandpa?} Why sure,you bet. That sounds great. Hopefully, when the time comes, I'd like to think that I am still with you, especially at such a special time.



How Well Do You Know Rudolph?

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