Members Area
Countdown to Christmas --
Visit My Merry Christmas on Facebook!   Visit My Merry Christmas on Twitter!   Get My Merry Christmas on RSS
Navigation » Merry Forums of My Merry Christmas > Blogs > lauriebear » Dashing Through the Snow - The Story of "Jingle Bells"


  Log-in
  Register



















» Stats
Members: 9,972
Threads: 53,434
Posts: 601,274
Top Poster: xmas365 (149,754)
Welcome to our newest member, LightsNXS
» Recent Comments
Hot Cocoa or Hot Chocolate: A Matter of Taste
It's hard to find good writing now a days. But you have done a great job with all these sharing hot Cocoa and hot Chocolate. That's interesting. Thanks for sharing.
The Best of Christmas Sitcoms
My top favorite Christmas Sitcoms: All from M*A*S*H , Happy Days, Laverne and Shirley. Step By Step - I'll Be Home For Christmas
His Name is Bud
love this story! Thanks for sharing your memories.
The Best of Christmas Sitcoms
Here are my top 10: (in no particular order) All 3 M*A*S*H Christmas episodes they made: Dear Dad Dear Sis Death Takes a Holiday The Bob Newhart Show: His Busiest Time I'm Dreaming of a...
Tips for Buying a Fresh Tree
I will do that fresh cut of the trunk.....that was my problem last Christmas.....the tree lost so many needles....even tho it was fresh....the problem was....since I didn´t cut the trunk....the tree...
» Random Entries
The Big Red Box
By MMC Editor
05-31-2002 09:27 PM
48,255 Views
0 Posts
Mostly Homemade (and...
By MMC Editor
06-02-2011 03:31 PM
46,010 Views  0 Posts
“On the Feast of...
By MerryCarey
05-21-2012 11:11 AM
30,066 Views  0 Posts
Kings of Extravagance
By MMC Editor
06-29-2002 08:08 PM
39,836 Views  0 Posts
"Christmas Every Day"...
By MerryCarey
10-28-2011 02:23 PM
65,833 Views  0 Posts
Rate this Entry

Dashing Through the Snow - The Story of "Jingle Bells"

Submit "Dashing Through the Snow - The Story of "Jingle Bells"" to Digg Submit "Dashing Through the Snow - The Story of "Jingle Bells"" to del.icio.us Submit "Dashing Through the Snow - The Story of "Jingle Bells"" to StumbleUpon Submit "Dashing Through the Snow - The Story of "Jingle Bells"" to Google
Posted 11-20-2012 at 12:16 PM by lauriebear

By Duane Shinn

Many people are surprised to learn that "Jingle Bells" was actually written for American Thanksgiving. The song was composed by James Lord Pierpont, and details surrounding his life and the writing of the song have been contended over the years. In fact, in some older publications, the song's writer is listed as 'anonymous.' It is commonly accepted today, however, that Pierpont was indeed the writer, though the song was originally published under the title "One Horse Open Sleigh."

A musician, Pierpont was not famous, at least during his own time. In fact, it's highly likely that he never made a dime off of "Jingle Bells." Pierpont, the son of an American minister, struggled at times to eke out a living for his family, especially when he suffered a business loss during the San Francisco gold rush. Broke, and with a wife and children to support, he headed from California to Savannah, Georgia to ask his brother John for help. John Pierpont had recently become the minister of a Unitarian church there. With his help, James became the church's musical director and organist.

Pierpont flourished in his position as musical director and was well-liked by his colleagues and parishioners alike. Despite this, his 'fame' was mostly limited to Savannah. It is speculated that it was during his posting at the church that he composed "Jingle Bells." The story goes that Pierpont wrote the song for a Sunday School Thanksgiving program. It had virtually no religious content whatsoever; it was simply a jaunty little poem about winter and the follies of youth.

The version of "Jingle Bells" that is sung most often today omits all but the first verse and chorus of the song. Recently, more modern artists have started recording the second verse too. The original version contains four stanzas, with the chorus repeated in between stanzas.

The song tells the story of a frolicking but misguided sleigh ride, whose driver hopes to impress a girl but ends up being laughed at by a peer instead. While most people would think of the word "upsot" in the second verse to mean that the sleigh tipped over, it is actually an ambiguous word which may also have referred to "drunkenness." So, perhaps in addition to the horses being less-than-surefooted, the sleigh's driver may have contributed to its misfortune by being a little bit tipsy. Despite a rough ride, the song concludes with an encouragement to listeners to take advantage of a crisp winter snow and enjoy a sleigh ride.

It is said that when the song was performed for the Thanksgiving pageant, it was extremely well-received. So much so, a request was made to have it sung again at the Christmas pageant. And thus "One Horse Open Sleigh" became forever synonymous with Christmas.

Unfortunately for Pierpont, he never realized the acclamation that was due him. The song took several years to gain more widespread popularity. Today, there are few who can't sing at least the first verse of "Jingle Bells." Indeed, no Christmas would be complete without it.
Posted in Christmas Media
Views 688 Comments 0
Total Comments 0

Comments

 
Total Trackbacks 0

Trackbacks

Year Round Christmas Radio -- Listen now!

Listen to Kringle Radio via...

Winamp
Windows Media


Click to listen now!


Listen to the Merry Podcast NOW

Christmas Fans -- Ranking the Best of Christmas









2012 Founder's Award