Santa Claus came from Troy?

Santa.jpg

Santa is a Troy boy?

By Melissa Mansfield

Quick, who are the most famous legends of Troy? Uncle Sam, Mame Faye...and Santa
Claus.

Santa Claus? Yep, the jolly old elf we know as Santa today first appeared in Troy, N.Y., 185 years ago today.

Well, sort of.

By then Saint Nicholas was well known for bringing gifts to good little children around the
world. But every country had its own concept of how St. Nick looked and traveled.

America's Santa Claus, the guy who's belly "shook when he laughed like a bowl full of
jelly," and traveled in a sleigh pulled by eight tiny reindeer made his first appearance in a little poem called "A Visit From Saint Nicholas," (yep, "T'was the Night Before Christmas") in 1823 in The Troy Sentinel.

Who wrote the poem? Historians disagree on this one. It was part of an anonymous letter to the editor, but it was quickly picked up by other papers across the country.
T'was the night before christmas.jpgA plaque at the old Sentinel building on River Street says it was Clement Moore. He claimed authorship in 1844, but poet Henry Livingston reportedly read it to his children 15 years before.

In any case, by 1860 an illustrator from Harpers added images to the poem and in 1931, the now famous Coca-Cola ads solidified the image of the guy we know as Santa Claus today.

Take that bit of trivia to the office holiday party.

Comments

...it wouldn't be THE holiday without
"T'was the night before Christmas".. kudos to the writer, whoever it was... Merry Christmas.

Interesting! I did not know that.

Coincidentally, I just received about 6 vintage Christmas & New Year postcards circa 1905, pre-coca cola Santa. No red to be found. http://bit.ly/7trZ3a

Say Something!

We'd really like you to take part in the conversation here at All Over Albany. But we do have a few rules here. Don't worry, they're easy. The first: be kind. The second: treat everyone else with the same respect you'd like to see in return. Cool? Great, post away. Comments are moderated so it might take a little while for your comment to show up. Thanks for being patient.

The Scoop

Ever wish you had a smart, savvy friend with the inside line on what's happening around the Capital Region? You know, the kind of stuff that makes your life just a little bit better? Yeah, we do, too. That's why we created All Over Albany. Find out more.

Recently on All Over Albany

J.D. McPherson at The Hangar

Singer/songwriter J.D. McPherson is set to play two shows at The Hangar in Troy, September 24 and September 25. Tickets are on sale now --... (more)

The Irish Alps

Over at NYT, Michael Malone revisits "The Irish Alps" a collection of resorts around East Durham in northern Greene County that were once a popular... (more)

Sarah and Brianna's Apartment on the Park

Sarah and Brianna's apartment is in an "old Albany" building, perfectly situated on Washington Park. But while the architecture and details throughout the apartment are... (more)

Albany History Race 2016

The Albany Public Library's Albany History Race returns September 24 and this year's event is focused on historic buildings. Blurbage: Anyone interested in Albany's storied... (more)

Morning Blend

The damage -- and recovery -- from Irene It was five years ago that rain from Tropical Storm Irene caused major, destructive flooding across Schoharie,... (more)

Recent Comments

... I think a competition would really help to open everyone's eyes to the real potential of the site. Too much time has been spent with typical, antiquated ideas. Let design professionals with new ideas have a crack at the site and you'll be amazed at it's potential.

Get started hiking the High Peaks (Part II)

...has 4 comments, most recently from Ed

Adapting to the Madison Ave Road Diet

...has 14 comments, most recently from Justin

How to move forward at 1 Monument Square?

...has 3 comments, most recently from Yerf

Today's moment of yarn

...has 3 comments, most recently from JulieA

Symbolic change

...has 1 comment, most recently from Randal Putnam