Is Your Favorite Christmas Carol On This 19th Century List?

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Eleanor Rose

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Not my favorite, per se, but the composer of "Up On the Housetop," Benjamin Hanby, was from my home town. (He also wrote "My Darling Nellie Gray"; he and his father, both pastors, were noted local abolitionists.)
Per Wikipedia, "Up On the Housetop" is the second-oldest secular Christmas song, outdone only by "Jingle Bells", which was written in 1857. Thanks for adding this one Mark! Merry Christmas!!!
 
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WJC

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Yes, some of my favorites are on that list. I am something of a traditionalist: for example, I don't consider Jingle Bells to be a "Christmas Carol". It, along with most of what one hears today (White Christmas, Silver Bells, Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer,...), is a great seasonal song.
I've never really thought about my one favorite. Since you asked, I suppose it would be Joy To The World.
 

Eleanor Rose

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I've never really thought about my one favorite. Since you asked, I suppose it would be Joy To The World.
Great choice! At one time "Joy to the World" was the most-published Christmas hymn in North America. I'm not sure if that's still true. Merry Christmas to you and thanks for contributing to this thread!
 
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Eleanor Rose

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Slightly off topic (shh!!!), but these are the Top 15 most-recorded holiday songs, according to Music Reports:
  1. "Silent Night" – 137,315 times
  2. "White Christmas" – 128,276 versions
  3. "Jingle Bells" – 89,681 versions
  4. "The Christmas Song" – 80,064 versions
  5. "Winter Wonderland" – 70,471 versions
  6. "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town" – 68,669 versions
  7. "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" – 65,377 versions
  8. "Joy to the World" – 59,767 versions
  9. "I'll Be Home for Christmas" – 56,552 versions
  10. "Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!" – 54,446 versions
  11. "Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer" – 49,384 versions
  12. "O Holy Night" – 48,665 versions
  13. "Silver Bells" – 48,440 versions
  14. "Blue Christmas" – 42,375 versions
  15. "The Little Drummer Boy" – 37,150 versions
 

Kurt G

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Slightly off topic (shh!!!), but these are the Top 15 most-recorded holiday songs, according to Music Reports:
  1. "Silent Night" – 137,315 times
  2. "White Christmas" – 128,276 versions
  3. "Jingle Bells" – 89,681 versions
  4. "The Christmas Song" – 80,064 versions
  5. "Winter Wonderland" – 70,471 versions
  6. "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town" – 68,669 versions
  7. "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" – 65,377 versions
  8. "Joy to the World" – 59,767 versions
  9. "I'll Be Home for Christmas" – 56,552 versions
  10. "Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!" – 54,446 versions
  11. "Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer" – 49,384 versions
  12. "O Holy Night" – 48,665 versions
  13. "Silver Bells" – 48,440 versions
  14. "Blue Christmas" – 42,375 versions
  15. "The Little Drummer Boy" – 37,150 versions
"I'll be Home for Christmas " was always sad to me , though well done . It came out in 1943 and is from the perspective of a GI serving in WW2.
 

Eleanor Rose

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"I'll be Home for Christmas " was always sad to me , though well done . It came out in 1943 and is from the perspective of a GI serving in WW2.
I never knew the story behind it Kurt, but I have always found it to be sad too. This explains it. A lot of folks are separated from the ones they love at Christmas for various reasons.
 
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Mrs. V

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Just for fun, here’s a list of carols written during or around the mid-19th century.

Angels We Have Heard on High (1862)
Come Buy my Nice Fresh Ivy or O’Carolan’s Lament (1849)
God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen (1833)
Good King Wenceslas (1853)
Hark! The Herald Angels Sing (1855)
Jingle Bells (1857)
Joy to the World (1839)
O Christmas Tree (1824)
O Holy Night (1847)
Silent Night (1859)
We Three Kings (1863)
What Child is This (1865)

Is your favorite traditional carol on the list? Whether it is or isn't, please share your favorite carol with your CWT friends! I'll start us off. My favorite is "I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day." This carol is based on the 1863 poem "Christmas Bells" by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. It reflects the despair of hearing Christmas bells during the American Civil War. I love that it ends with the bells ringing renewed hope for peace among men.
Oh Holy Night. I love singing this, second only to “What child is this”..that one requires quite a bit of breath control!
 
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