Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer was inspired by a marketing assignment for a department shop. During the 1939 Christmas shopping season, the defunct Chicago-based department retailer Montgomery Ward planned to give out free coloring sheets to youngsters. Robert L. May, a copywriter, was charged with composing a poem for the booklets. He came up with "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" during a lunch break at work.
May also credited with coming up with the idea for Santa's Workshop as well. Before this publication, there were no images of children playing with toys in magazines or other publications. May thought that seeing these photos would make children want to receive gifts on Christmas Day.
So, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer was born! It first appeared in the Montgomery Ward catalog in November 1939. The story was so popular that it became an instant classic and has never gone out of print since its debut. There have been many adaptations of the story over the years including television specials, films, games and more.
Some people may know the story only from these adaptations, but it originally had nothing to do with Christmas. It is a fictional story about a reindeer who lives in the mountains of Colorado where there are still some red trees growing today if you can find them.
Robert L. May, a copywriter for the Chicago-based Montgomery Ward department shops, wrote the story of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer in 1939 as a promotional present for the store's customers. The story was also printed in several other newspapers that were part of the Ward chain at the time.
May had never before written a word of fiction and he received little guidance from his editor or anyone else about how to write a children's book. However, he did research on Santa Claus and other characters from traditional Christmas stories for this work. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer has become one of the most popular Christmas classics ever written.
Robert May was born on August 4th, 1895 in St. Joseph, Missouri. He got his start in journalism working for the Minneapolis Tribune and the Chicago Daily News before moving to Chicago where he worked for Montgomery Ward until his death in 1969. During his career at Ward, he wrote more than 50 books, many of which are still in print today. He is also known for writing the book that promoted the Comet soda brand - A Bowl of Comets.
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer has been translated into more than 20 languages and has been adapted for television numerous times. In 1975, an animated version of the story was produced for NBC with May's approval.
Montgomery Ward department store Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer initially appeared in 1939, when Montgomery Ward requested one of its copywriters, 34-year-old Robert L. May, to produce a Christmas narrative for the company to give out as a promotional gimmick. May came up with the idea of a story about a reindeer who gained supernatural abilities after being blessed by Christmastime spirits.
Ward's hired an artist named Gene Gentry to draw the book and issued 3,000 copies of it. It was an immediate success and has been credited with bringing Christmas cheer to Americans every year since then.
In 1969, Montgomery Ward went out of business. However, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer continues to appear each year on Christmas cards, gifts, and other merchandise sold by various companies. In fact, according to some estimates, Rudolph has become one of the most popular icons in all of Christmas literature!
Rudolph was developed by May in 1939 as a commission for Chicago-based Montgomery Ward. Every year, the shop purchased and distributed coloring books for Christmas, and it was thought that developing their own book would save money. May stated that his daughter was fond of reindeer, and he stated that he was treated like Rudolph as a youngster. The name "Rudolph" came from one of May's employees, who suggested it as a nickname for someone who had been given a job promotion.
In response to this suggestion, May wrote, "Good! Then make him wear boots."
Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer has become a worldwide phenomenon that continues to spread joy during the holiday season.
He has appeared in several films, television specials, and commercials. There have also been various products named after Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer such as candy, clothing, and toys. In addition, a variety of activities have been created around the world to celebrate Rudolph's spirit of generosity and kindness. For example, people place candles in their windows to show they are letting in some of Rudolph's warmth and love for others.
There is now a city on Earth called Rudolph, California. This small town is located near Yosemite National Park and is included in the list of Most Haunted Cities in America.
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer was created by May (July 27, 1905-August 11, 1976). Though he did not come up with the idea for the story, which is based on a traditional Christmas carol, he did help make it into what we know today as one of the most popular children's books of all time.
May was an American author who also wrote under the pen names Larry Levis and Robert Lawson. He is best known for his creation of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, which has been translated into more than 30 languages.
In fact, so many people think that Larry Levis created Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer that some find it hard to believe that it was actually written by May. However, according to May himself, he wrote several stories for children during the 1940s and 1950s, including Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. Though he claimed that he received credit for it, no one else did.
In addition to writing books, May also worked at various times as an advertising copywriter, toy designer, cartoonist, and painter. He lived in California most of his life but was born in Illinois. He died in August 1976 at the age of seventy.