Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer

Have you ever wondered where the concept of Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer came from?  Well, let us tell you!

Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer first appeared in 1939 when Montgomery Ward department store asked one of its copywriters, 34-year-old Robert L. May, to create a Christmas story the store could give away to shoppers as a promotional gimmick.

The retailer had been buying and giving away colouring books for Christmas every year; and it was decided that creating its own book would save money.  When May first came up with the concept of the red-nosed reindeer, it rejected by the department store executives as red noses were synonymous with people with alcohol problems.  Undeterred May asked one of his friends and colleagues, a graphic designer, to draw the cutest reindeer he could.  From this visual May convinced the executives to go ahead with the story.

In the first year of publication, 2.4 million copies of Rudolph’s story were distributed by Montgomery Ward.

May’s brother-in-law, songwriter Johnny Marks, decided to adapt the story of Rudolph into a song; and the musical version of “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer” was recorded by Gene Autry in 1949.

To help with the Christmas trivia, of “can you name all of the reindeers in the song”, here are the lyrics which you may also want to sing with your little one:

You know Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and VixenComet and Cupid and Donner and BlitzenBut do you recallThe most famous reindeer of all?
Rudolph the Red-Nosed ReindeerHad a very shiny noseAnd if you ever saw itYou would even say it glows
All of the other reindeerUsed to laugh and call him namesThey never let poor RudolphJoin in any reindeer games
Then one foggy Christmas EveSanta came to say“Rudolph, with your nose so brightWon’t you guide my sleigh tonight?”
Then how the reindeer loved himAs they shouted out with glee“Rudolph the Red-Nosed ReindeerYou’ll go down in history”