Christmas Specials Wiki
Christmas Specials Wiki

That dog eats too much!

— Clement Moore's young son, unintentionally engaging in hypocritical humor

The Night Before Christmas is a 1968 animated Christmas television special. Created by Bill Turnbull, it is based on an original story by Louise Turnbull, featuring a fictional telling of how Clement Moore came to write A Visit from St. Nicholas.


Professor Clement Moore goes on a short trip just before Christmas to give a series of lectures at a university. He promises to get presents for his family while he's gone -- his son and youngest daughter ask for toys while his oldest daughter, Charity, asks for a storybook about Santa Claus. Though he manages to find toys for his son and youngest daughter, Professor Moore is unable to find any kind of storybook about Santa Claus -- he then decides to get a music box for Charity, hoping she'll understand.

Unfortunately, while Professor Moore's away, Charity develops pneumonia and Dr. Sawyer, the family physician, says that she may not survive -- Professor Moore ends up coming home early, just as the family's manservant, Peter, is dispatched to get him (and explains the situation to his boss). Peter and Professor Moore rush home, and the latter's distraught to find his beloved daughter near death.

While he tries showing off the music box he got for her, Charity (through her fever) is asking for the storybook she requested from her dad. Feeling bad for not being able to find a storybook his daughter, Professor Moore eventually gets the idea to write his own story about Santa Claus, which he ends up titling "A Visit from St. Nicholas." Once he's writing it, he reads the story to Charity, who loves it. Charity soon begins recovering from her illness, and on Christmas Day, her dad brings her downstairs and she's able to enjoy the holiday with the rest of the household.



Title Music by Lyrics by
"'Twas the Night Before Christmas" Ken Darby Clement Clark Moore
"The Morning of Christmas" Lousie Turnbull
"Savory Serenade" Bill Turnbull
"Lullaby Time"


Voice actor/actress As/Character
The Norman Luboff Choir Themselves
Olan Soule Professor Clement C. Moore
Barbara Eiler Mrs. Moore
Hal Smith Dr. Sawyer
Virginia Gregg Gretchen
Laura & Shari Turnbull
Douglas Crowther
Diana Lee
Thurl Ravenscroft
Bill Cole
Eleanor Geffert
Julie Rinker

External links[]

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