On This Day…

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer

December 6, 1964

The classic television special Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer premieres on NBC. It has aired every year since, making it the longest continuously running Christmas TV special in history. The story was based on the Johnny Marks song Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer which was itself based on the poem of the same name written in 1939 by Marks’ brother-in-law, Robert L. May.
Marks specialized in Christmas songs, even though he was Jewish. He also wrote Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree (1958) and A Holly, Jolly Christmas (1962).