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Rudolph was born 75 years ago this Christmas season, at the Montgomery Ward department store headquarters in Chicago. He was the star of a coloring book, written by a copywriter, Robert May, who almost named him “Reginald.” May, who’d been lonely as a child, based the character on himself. Store executives fretted that shoppers might think Rudolph’s nose was red because he was drunk, but something about Rudolph’s story spoke to people. He was an outcast, down on his luck. When Santa gave him a job (it was the Great Depression, after all)—well, something clicked. That Christmas, the company passed out two and a half million copies of the book.

On December 6, 1964, NBC aired the first Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer television special. Fifty years later, it has become a beloved Christmas classic—capturing the heart and wonder of generations of fans.#Christmas #Rudolph #Chicago