Author, Historian, and Collector Pamela McColl

Discover the History of ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas’ with Author, Historian, and Collector Pamela McColl at Fenimore Art Museum

The History of ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas’
A presentation and book signing by author Pamela McColl on Tuesday, November 29 • 11:30 am–12:30 pm

Cooperstown, New York – “Twas The Night Before Christmas” was read aloud for the first time on Christmas Eve, 1822; it was subsequently published by the Troy Sentinel newspaper on December 23, 1823. The much-loved poem celebrates its 200th anniversary this holiday season. To mark the bicentennial, a new book, “Twas The Night – The Art and History of the Classic Christmas Poem” by author Pamela McColl presents the stories behind the masterpiece. Join Pamela at Fenimore Art Museum on Tuesday, November 29 from 11:30 am–12:30 pm to hear about the life and times of the poet Clement C. Moore and the poem’s own story, including its publishing history, its remarkable rise in popularity, and the thousands of editions of the magical lines that have been released in book format.

The presentation features a Q&A and patrons are invited to ask questions pertaining to collecting editions of the poem–a popular pastime for many enthusiasts of “Twas The Night Before Christmas.” A book signing will follow. The program is included with regular museum admission and free for museum members, visitors 19 and under, and active military and retired career military personnel. Free museum admission is also available for those receiving SNAP benefits (up to 4 people) with the presentation of a SNAP Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card.

Pamela McColl, author/historian/collector and authority on the popular poem, spent a decade researching the material for her new book. In her presentation at the Fenimore, she will share interesting discoveries that link the poem to other early 19th-century writers including Washington Irving and James Fenimore Cooper. Pamela will finish her presentation with a review of the ways in which great artists and illustrators of the 19th and 20th centuries (like Norman Rockwell, NC Wyeth, Jessie Willcox Smith,  W.W. Denslow, and Andy Warhol) were inspired by the classic Christmas poem.

About the Author
In 2012, Pamela McColl created a media firestorm for her smoke-free/pipe-free edition of the poem: “Twas The Night Before Christmas edited by Santa Claus for the Benefit of Children of the 21st Century.“ McColl (B.A. North American history) is a corporate art consultant/author/publisher. Bicentennial celebrations in honor of the poem are planned for holiday seasons 2022/2023. McColl plans to tour New York, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and Connecticut in the fall of 2022.

About Fenimore Art Museum
Fenimore Art Museum, located on the shores of Otsego Lake—James Fenimore Cooper’s “Glimmerglass”—in historic Cooperstown, New York, features a wide-ranging collection of American art including folk art; important American 18th- and 19th-century landscape, genre, and portrait paintings; more than 125,000 historic photographs representing the technical developments made in photography and providing extensive visual documentation of the region’s unique history; and the renowned Eugene and Clare Thaw Collection of American Indian Art comprised of nearly 900 art objects representative of a broad geographic range of North American Indian cultures, from the Northwest Coast, Eastern Woodlands, Plains, Southwest, Great Lakes, and Prairie regions. Visit

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