Monday, December 12, 2016

Fun facts about Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer - The story



Rudolph is the much beloved story of the reindeer with the shiny red nose. Many kids today probably perceive the story as an old Christmas tale as it is passed down the generations. 

Image credit: Leigh Goessl

But is it really? Did you know that Rudolph is a relatively modern story? The story of the lovable reindeer was penned in 1939. Here are some other fun facts you may or may not know about Rudolph:

Fun facts about Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer


1. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer was originally written as a marketing initiative. At the time, a man named Robert L. May was working for Montgomery Ward. The department store asked May to write a Christmas tale it could hand out in coloring books to customers during the holiday shopping season.

2. Robert May was 34 years old at the time he penned the famous story. 

3. Inspiration for writing the now famous story was drawn from a combination of personal experience and The Ugly Duckling story. 

4. Rudolph was not a native to the North Pole as modern storytelling says. The little reindeer was spotted by Santa Claus while delivering presents on a foggy Christmas Eve. 

5. During its first year, 2.4 million copies of the Rudolph were distributed.

6. Rudolph’s name was almost Reginald (the frontrunner name) , Roddy, Rodney, Romeo, Roland or Reggy. 

7. During World War II, there were paper shortages. Montgomery Ward did not print the booklet again until 1946 when 3.5 million more copies were distributed. 

8. Since the story was written as an employer assignment, May did not own the copyright, Montgomery Ward did. In 1947, Montgomery Ward gave the author the copyright. 

9. In 1948, May’s brother-in-law Johnny Marks set Rudolph to music, bringing it to remarkable levels of fame. 

10. Arthur Rankin, Jr. and Saul Bass famous Christmas television special based on May’s story debuted on Dec. 6, 1964.  

Over the years many more Rudolph stories, songs, television specials, toys and other products have been created. Today, in 2016, Rudolph remains as popular as ever. 

Image credit: Pixabay

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