"Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse." Opening lines to one of the most well-known and well-loved Christmas poems of all time, but how did they come to be? In this episode Dianne and Jennie have a delightful chat with Pamela McColl author of the newly released book, "Twas the Night: The Art and History of the Classic Christmas Poem". They discuss Moore's Ordinary Extraordinary life as a scholar, loving father, and a man devoted to helping others and Pamela tells of a very special Christmas tradition that has taken place at Clement C. Moore's graveside for more than 100 years. From Dianne, Jennie and the Ordinary Extraordinary Cemetery Podcast crew, "Happy Christmas to all!"
Clement C. Moore spent much of his adult life living in New Port, Rhode Island. Pamela McColl's book "Twas the Night: The Art and History of the Classic Christmas Poem" can be purchased from the following local New Port bookstore:
Or be sure to check your local bookstores!
You can also purchase the book from Barnes & Nobel:
Or from Amazon: Twas the Night: The Art and History of the Classic Christmas Poem
Photo of book cover, Clement C. Moore, and Pamela McColl provided by Pamela McColl and shared with permission.
Photo of Clement C. Moore grave provided by: https://audubonparkperspectives.files.wordpress.com/2011/12/0ddc4-ccmooregrave.jpg
Author, historian, and vintage book collector Pamela McColl tours America in 2022 speaking on the poem’s vibrant legacy at dozens of museums, bookstores, and libraries. McColl presents the poem’s story in a new book, Twas The Night – The Art and History of the Classic Christmas Poem.
The author calls the masterpiece of juvenile fiction the most often read, recited, reprinted, and collected work in the library of English literature and considers the 200th milestone of this warm-hearted poem cause for celebration.
“In compiling the material for Twas The Night – The Art and History of the Classic Christmas Poem I accessed art collections and combed through archives across America. I made fascinating discoveries including locating the only known to exist photograph of the poet Clement Clarke Moore ( New York 1779-1863) and of the home where the lines were crafted for Christmas Eve 1822.” McColl
“Charles Dickens and Washington Irving may have created Christmas dinner, but it was Moore “The Poet of Christmas Eve” who gave us Santa Claus with all the trimmings.” McColl
“For the very first time, the poem’s own story is presented. It’s a luscious, entertaining tome that took ten years to create. Bravo, author and editor, Pamela McColl! ” David Paul Kirkpatrick, American film producer and writer, former President Paramount Pictures, President Production Walt Disney Pictures, Touchstone Pictures.
“A delightful and informative exploration of “A Visit From St. Nicholas” for the holiday season.” Kirkus Reviews.
“Whether a library is focused on art, history, popular culture, or Christmas, Twas the Night: The Art and History of the Classic Christmas Poem represents an outstanding work of literature and a compelling read the entire family can enjoy.” Diane Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review.
Five Star Rating Amanda Ellison, Indie Reader: “All readers could ever wish to learn--in pictures and prose--about the world’s definitive festive verse. - Pamela McColl's Twas The Night : The Art and History of the Classic Christmas Poem, is packed full of vintage illustrations and lesser-known historical details that make the book a bundle of perennial joy, for believers and non-believers alike.”
December staff pick: Takoma Library, Washington, D.C. – Elisa Babel – Librarian.
“I started leafing through it for the article and have gotten fully involved – its fascinating, well written and enjoyable reading. “ Caspar Ewig – journalist.
In 2012, McColl created a firestorm from Stephen Colbert to Barbara Walters over her smoke free edition of the poem: Twas The Night Before Christmas edited by Santa Claus for the Benefit of Children of the 21st. Century. The editing of the pipe was discussed in media outlets from China, India and beyond.
Additional reviews Indie Review, Midwest Book Review.
Featured Media Coverage:
Magazines: Woman’s Day December 2022
Woman’s World November 2022.
Radio: NPR: https://www.northcountrypublicradio.org/news/story/46639/20220928/new-book-celebrates-bicentennial-of-famous-quot-twas-the-night-before-christmas-quot-poem
Television: ABC News Albany,
McColl toured New York, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts and New Hampshire in the fall of 2022, speaking at libraries, museums, galleries and bookstores including: The Springfield Museum, The Berkshire Museum, The Fenimore Museum, The Proctor Munson, The Albany Institute of Art and History, The Mayflower Society, The Hart Cluett Museum, The Mark Twain Museum, The Warner/Irving Library, The Darien Library, The Potsdam Library, The Maine Historical Society, The Newport Historical Museum, The Rhode Island Historical Society.