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Christmas Past

It's the fascinating backstories to the Christmas traditions you cherish. Christmas Past brings you year-round Christmas history, forgotten Christmas fiction, roundtables, interviews, and most of all, Christmas cheer. And it's all from the uniquely warm and nostalgic world of Brian Earl — where the holiday season never ends!
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Nov 23, 2020

The countdown to the new season of Christmas Past is almost over! Come back on Thanksgiving Day for the season kickoff and for me to wish you a Merry Christmas. Ever wonder why we say "Merry Christmas"? Let's revisit a classic episode of Christmas Past to find out. 

Be sure to check out the "Definitive Directory of Christmas Podcasts"

Share a Christmas memory on the podcast! Just record a voice memo into your phone and send it to christmaspastpodcast@gmail.com. Keep it reasonably short, clean and family friendly, and be sure to say your name and where you're from. 

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Music from this episode

  • “Gaena” — Blue Dot Sessions, via Free Music Archive
  • “March” — Kai Engel, via Free Music Archive
  • “Delicant” — Podington Bear, via Free Music Archive
  • “Suppose it Is” — Podington Bear, via Free Music Archive
  • “Wish Background” — Kevin MacLeod, via Incompetech
Nov 20, 2020

Next Thursday is Thanksgiving! And that means the start of an all new season of Christmas Past. By now you've probably seen Christmas ads and merchandise on the shelves and the airwaves. So let's check out a classic episode from the archive, where Brian tells the story of how Christmas advertising came to be.

Be sure to check out the "Definitive Directory of Christmas Podcasts"

Share a Christmas memory on the podcast! Just record a voice memo into your phone and send it to christmaspastpodcast@gmail.com. Keep it reasonably short, clean and family friendly, and be sure to say your name and where you're from. 

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Music from this episode

Nov 17, 2020

Thanksgiving is a week from Thursday, and that's when official 2020 season of Christmas Past begins. As we count down, we're taking a look back at the classic episodes that started it all. Today, it's the 2017 episode about the surprising history behind The Nutcracker. 

Be sure to check out the "Definitive Directory of Christmas Podcasts"

Share a Christmas memory on the podcast! Just record a voice memo into your phone and send it to christmaspastpodcast@gmail.com. Keep it reasonably short, clean and family friendly, and be sure to say your name and where you're from. 

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Music from this episode

Nov 14, 2020

We're less than two weeks away from the start of the new season of Christmas Past. Till then, we're revisiting some classics from Christmas Past...past. Today's episode is the last in the original three-part series about the origins of Santa Claus.

Be sure to check out the "Definitive Directory of Christmas Podcasts"

Share a Christmas memory on the podcast! Just record a voice memo into your phone and send it to christmaspastpodcast@gmail.com. Keep it reasonably short, clean and family friendly, and be sure to say your name and where you're from. 

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Music in this episode

Nov 11, 2020

Thanksgiving is just two weeks away, and that means the start of the new "official" season of Christmas Past. Till then, we're revisiting some of the classics from the vault. This time, it's part two of the three part series that started it all. 

Be sure to check out the "Definitive Directory of Christmas Podcasts"

Share a Christmas memory on the podcast! Just record a voice memo into your phone and send it to christmaspastpodcast@gmail.com. Keep it reasonably short, clean and family friendly, and be sure to say your name and where you're from. 

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Music from this episode

Nov 8, 2020

It's the countdown to the 2020 Christmas season episodes of Christmas Past! From now till Thanksgiving, we're revisiting some of the classic Christmas Past episodes. Today's is the very first episode of Christmas Past, published on Thanksgiving Day in 2016. It's the first in a three-part series about the origins of Santa Claus.

Be sure to check out the "Definitive Directory of Christmas Podcasts"

Share a Christmas memory on the podcast! Just record a voice memo into your phone and send it to christmaspastpodcast@gmail.com. Keep it reasonably short, clean and family friendly, and be sure to say your name and where you're from. 

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Music in this episode

Nov 5, 2020

Leading up to Thanksgiving Day (when we kick off the 2020 season episodes), we're revisiting some of the classic episodes from the Christmas Past back catalog. This one is the first episode I ever created for Christmas Past: Sugarplums!

Even though you hear about sugar plums every Christmas, do you actually know what they are? In this episode we learn the mostly forgotten history of this Christmassy treat.

Be sure to check out the "Definitive Directory of Christmas Podcasts"

Share a Christmas memory on the podcast! Just record a voice memo into your phone and send it to christmaspastpodcast@gmail.com. Keep it reasonably short, clean and family friendly, and be sure to say your name and where you're from. 

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Music from this episode

Nov 2, 2020
We're kicking off November of 2020 with a visit from an old friend. Alex Palmer, author of The Santa Claus Man, appeared in Christmas Past's miniseries, My Dear Santa,: A True Crime Christmas Caper. Now he's back with a new book, The Atlas of Christmas.
 
Join Alex and me for a discussion some of the fun, quirky Christmas traditions around the world that we miss out on here in America.

Don't forget to check out the Definitive Directory of Christmas Podcasts!

Music in this episode

Share a Christmas memory on the podcast! Just record a voice memo into your phone and send it to christmaspastpodcast@gmail.com. Keep it reasonably short, clean and family friendly, and be sure to say your name and where you're from. 

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Oct 30, 2020

Just in time for Halloween, it's a story about a very creepy game of hide that takes place on Christmas Eve. Happy Halloween! Christmas Past is back for another Ber Months Bonus episode, for those of us getting an early start on the Christmas season. 

Share a Christmas memory on the podcast! Just record a voice memo into your phone and send it to christmaspastpodcast@gmail.com. Keep it reasonably short, clean and family friendly, and be sure to say your name and where you're from. 

Keep in touch

Don't forget to check out the Definitive Directory of Christmas Podcasts!

Music in this episode

  • Quiet Road — Peder B. Helland, via Soothing Relaxation
  • Planet Earth — Peder B. Helland, via Soothing Relaxation
Oct 23, 2020

We're almost to the end of October. The countdown to Christmas is in full swing, and I'm back again with another Ber Months Bonus episode. This time it's another forgotten work of Christmas fiction: the 1917 short story "It was the same Christmas morning," by Cyrus Townsend Brady.

Be sure to check out the "Definitive Directory of Christmas Podcasts"

Share a Christmas memory on the podcast! Just record a voice memo into your phone and send it to christmaspastpodcast@gmail.com. Keep it reasonably short, clean and family friendly, and be sure to say your name and where you're from. 

Keep in touch

Music in this episode

Oct 16, 2020

It's mid-October and that means the countdown to the countdown to Christmas is in full swing! Christmas cards and panettones are starting to appear on the shelves. Maybe you're even starting to think about Christmas dinner. So was the protagonist of this episode's short story. I'm reading the 1895 story, published anonymously, called My Christmas Dinner. It's a comedy of manners about a narrator who turns down one Christmas dinner invitation after another, holding out for the "ideal" Christmas invitation to arrive.

I hope you enjoy hearing it as much as I enjoyed reading it!

Don't forget to check out the Definitive Directory of Christmas Podcasts!

Share a Christmas memory on the podcast! Just record a voice memo into your phone and send it to christmaspastpodcast@gmail.com. Keep it reasonably short, clean and family friendly, and be sure to say your name and where you're from. 

Keep in touch

Music in this episode

Oct 9, 2020

In today's episode, Brian reads the1917 short story titled 'The Lone Scout's Christmas,' by Cyrus Townsend Brady. It's the story of a grieving boy facing a Christmas in an unfamiliar place, when he finds himself stranded in the snow. But he uses his scouting skills to bring everything to a satisfyingly Christmassy conclusion.

Be sure to check out the "Definitive Directory of Christmas Podcasts"

Share a Christmas memory on the podcast! Just record a voice memo into your phone and send it to christmaspastpodcast@gmail.com. Keep it reasonably short, clean and family friendly, and be sure to say your name and where you're from. 

Music in this episode

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Oct 4, 2020

We’re back for the ninth and final installment of the 1918 YA novel, “Campfire Girls in the Allegheny Mountains (or: A Christmas Success Against Odds).” It’s part of Christmas Past’s “Ber Months Bonus” series of episodes for those of us getting an early start on the Christmas season.

Be sure to check out the "Definitive Directory of Christmas Podcasts" over at christmaspast.media

Music in this episode

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Sep 29, 2020

We’re back for the eighth (and next-to-last) installment of the 1918 YA novel, “Campfire Girls in the Allegheny Mountains (or: A Christmas Success Against Odds).” It’s part of Christmas Past’s “Ber Months Bonus” series of episodes for those of us getting an early start on the Christmas season.

Stay subscribed for more Christmas fun throughout the Ber Months all the way up to Thanksgiving Day when the REAL Christmas season episodes begin. 

Music in this episode

  • Relaxing Piano Music” — Kevin MacLeod, via Incompetech
  • The Christmas Song — Don Maue, shared directly by the artist

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Sep 26, 2020

We're back for the seventh installment of the 1918 YA novel, "Campfire Girls in the Allegheny Mountains (or: A Christmas Success Against Odds)." It's part of Christmas Past's "Ber Months Bonus" series of episodes for those of us getting an early start on the Christmas season.

As the countdown to Christmas grows shorter, the danger grows higher for the girls of the Flamingo Camp Fire. Find out what peril this episode has in store!

Stay subscribed for new installments every few days over the next couple of weeks!

Music in this episode

  • Relaxing Piano Music” — Kevin MacLeod, via Incompetech
  • "We Wish You a Merry Christmas" — Don Maue, shared directly by the artist

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Sep 23, 2020

We're back for the sixth installment of the 1918 YA novel, "Campfire Girls in the Allegheny Mountains (or: A Christmas Success Against Odds)." It's part of Christmas Past's "Ber Months Bonus" series of episodes for those of us getting an early start on the Christmas season.

We're now about halfway through the story and in this installment, the action takes a breather, while the Christmas spirit ramps up a bit in Hollyhill. 

Stay subscribed for new installments every few days over the next couple of weeks!

Music in this episode

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Sep 15, 2020

Continuing our "Ber Months Bonus" series, we're back for the next installment of the 1918 YA novel, "Campfire Girls in the Allegheny Mountains (or: A Christmas Success Against Odds)." The plot takes a bit of a breather in this installment, as everyone reacts to the harrowing events from last time. Stay subscribed for new installments every few days over the next couple of weeks!

Music in this episode

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Sep 8, 2020

Welcome to the next installment of Campfire Girls in the Allegheny Mountains (or: A Christmas Success Against Odds). Brian is reading this 1918 YA novel to kick off the Ber Months for those of us getting an early start on the Christmas season. This time, we check in on the boy scouts as they set out on their own holiday plans, only to stumble upon a devious plot! 

Music in this episode

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Sep 5, 2020

We're continuing our Ber Months bonus series for those of us getting an early start on the Christmas season. Brian is reading the 1918 YA novel, Campfire Girls in the Allegheny Mountains (or: A Christmas Success Against Odds). Last time we left the girls, they were on a train ride, and hostess Marion was disturbed by a mysterious letter. Let's see what happens next!

Music in this episode

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Sep 2, 2020

Welcome back. We're continuing where we left off from the 1918 YA novel, "Campfire Girls in the Allegheny Mountains (or: A Christmas Success Against Odds). It's a fitting kickoff to the Ber Months Bonus episodes of 2020. Stay subscribed as I continue bringing a few chapters in each installment every few days until the story is complete. 

Music in this episode

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Aug 31, 2020

For many of us, the start of the 'Ber Months' marks the beginning of the holiday season. So today, on Ber Months Eve, I'm launching a new Story Time miniseries.

Because COVID will make Christmas of 2020 a Christmas against the odds, I thought it would be fitting to read the 1918 YA Novel, Campfire Girls in the Allegheny Mountains (or: A Christmas Against Odds). 

I'll read one or two chapters in each installment until the story is complete. Happy Ber Months, sugarplums! 

Music in this episode

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Jun 25, 2020

Happy Leon Day, everyone! We're at the exact halfway point to Christmas. Christmas in July is just days away, and so is the start of the 2nd Annual Christmas Past summer cookie swap. I hope you're feeling as festive as I am! Leon Day is the unofficial start of the Christmas crafting season, so I asked crafter Juliette Williams to join me to discuss the magic of a handcrafted Christmas. For more info Leon Day's backstory, check out my episode from 2019.

Mentioned in this episode

Music in this episode

  • "Christmas Village" — Aaron Kenny, via YouTube Audio Library
  • "Falling Snow" — Aakash Gandhi, via YouTube Audio Library
  • "I Saw Three Ships" — Audionautix, via YouTube Audio Library
  • "Cottonwoods" — Blue Dot Sessions, via Free Music Archive
  • "Turning" — Blue Dot Sessions, via Free Music Archive

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Jun 10, 2020

I'm back with another installment of story time. Here's a great one for the whole family: "Lill's Travels in Santa Claus Land," a story from 1878. And though she isn't mentioned by name, it's one of the first times that a Mrs Santa Claus shows up in print! 

Enjoy the story, and stay safe!

Music in this episode

  • Relaxing Piano Music” — Kevin MacLeod, via Incompetech
  • "Checkmate" — Nathan Moore, via YouTube Audio Library

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May 20, 2020

Welcome to another game where you need to spot the lie! This time, I'm joined by Todd from Christmas Clatter, Carrie from Christmas Book Review, and Chris from Yuletide TV. 

Oh, and after more than 100 episodes, this is the last time you'll hear me sign off from "sunny San Mateo, California." Christmas Past is moving to new headquarters, so stay subscribed to hear where. (Spoiler: it's not the North Pole.) 

Stay safe and healthy, everyone!

Mentioned in this episode

Music in this episode

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May 6, 2020

It's another installment of Christmas in Quarantine! I hope you're staying safe and healthy and keeping your spirits up. Today's episode is another edition of story time. This one's on the sad side, but it is a classic story from Dostoevsky. Enjoy! 

Music in this episode

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