Phillips Library Advent Calendar, December 24

Santa Clause Presents His Compliments . . .Santa Has Not Yet Arrived

‘Twas the night before Christmas . . .  How many of us have gone to bed Christmas Eve listening to that story and wondering if we really did hear Santa on the roof?  This item, the earliest movable book version of Clement Moore’s classic tale, was published in Roxbury, Massachusetts in 1858.  The rare toy book includes a lithograph of a fireplace decorated for Christmas on one side, with Moore’s poem printed on the other.  Read more

Elves on the Shelves of the Phillips Library

& Jennifer Hornsby


Introducing (from left to right): Buddy, Jingle, and Winkie!

For the month of December, the Phillips Library has taken pleasure in receiving a little help with inspiration for the holiday spirit around our offices. Much to our surprise, we have been visited by a trio of North Pole natives, a group of elves who apparently love rare books and manuscripts almost as much as they love snowball fights and fine-tuned toy manufacturing. During their time here, our elves have provided healthy doses of cheer and mischief, reminding us that the special and rare items at the Phillips Library really should be shared and celebrated by everyone.

Read more

Phillips Library Advent Calendar, December 23

Cover, A Visit From St. Nicholas by Clement Moore, 1862

Cover, A Visit From St. Nicholas by Clement Moore, 1862

First published anonymously on December 23, 1823, Clement Moore did not acknowledge authorship of this poem until 1844.  Although Moore’s poem is largely responsible for the folklore surrounding Santa Claus from the early 19th century to the present, have any of you questioned the miniature sleigh, the tiny reindeer, and the jolly old elf, described as little several times — little old driver, little mouth, little round belly?  Maybe that is why all of us can envision Santa Claus coming down the chimney on Christmas Eve. Read more