“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Medford in Middlesex County, Massachusetts — The American Northeast (New England)

“Jingle Bells” Composed Here

“Jungle Bells” Composed Here Marker image. Click for full size.
By Roger W. Sinnott, December 24, 2011
1. “Jungle Bells” Composed Here Marker
Inscription. On this site stood the Simpson Tavern, where in 1850 James Pierpont (1822–1893) wrote the song “Jingle Bells” in the presence of Mrs. Otis Waterman, who later verified that the song was written here. Pierpont had the song copyrighted in 1857 while living in Georgia. “Jingle Bells” tells of the sleigh races held on Salem Street in the early 1800’s.
Erected 1988 by the Medford Historical Society.
Location. 42° 25.107′ N, 71° 6.616′ W. Marker is in Medford, Massachusetts, in Middlesex County. Marker is on High Street (Massachusetts Route 60), on the right when traveling west. Click for map. The marker is in the first block from Medford Square. Marker is at or near this postal address: 19 High Street, Medford MA 02155, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Captain Isaac Hall Hitching Post (within shouting distance of this marker); “Grandfather’s House”
Modern Store Front image. Click for full size.
By Roger W. Sinnott, December 24, 2011
2. Modern Store Front
Nothing remains of the Simpson Tavern.
(approx. 0.3 miles away); Royall House (approx. 0.4 miles away); The Peter Tufts (Cradock) House (approx. one mile away); Powder House (approx. 1.2 miles away); Harris Delta (approx. 1.6 miles away); Malden Spanish War Veterans Monument (approx. 1.6 miles away); James Walter Mullally Crossing (approx. 1.8 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Medford.
Related marker. Click here for another marker that is related to this marker. It is another “Jingle Bells” marker. There is more about the author there.
Also see . . .  Wikipedia entry. This article has many interesting comments on the lyrics and their meaning. (Submitted on December 24, 2011, by Roger W. Sinnott of Chelmsford, Massachusetts.) 
Additional comments.
A One-Horse Open Sleigh image. Click for full size.
J. J. Prats Postcard Collection
3. A One-Horse Open Sleigh
Undated postcard titled “Jingle Bells." Plastichrome® No. P8612 by Colourpicture Publishers, Inc., Boston 15, Mass. U.S.A. “Color by Ozzie Sweet.”

1. Original 1857 Lyrics
From the Wikipedia entry.
Dashing through the snow
In a one-horse open sleigh
O'er the hills we go
Laughing all the way.
Bells on bobtail ring
Making spirits bright
Oh what sport to ride and sing
A sleighing song tonight.

Jingle bells, jingle bells
Jingle all the way!
O what joy it is to ride
In a one-horse open sleigh.

A day or two ago
I thought I’d take a ride
And soon Miss Fannie Bright
Was seated by my side.
The horse was lean and lank
Misfortune seemed his lot
He got into a drifted bank
And we — we got upsot.


A day or two ago
The story I must tell
I went out on the snow
And on my back I fell.
A gent was riding by
In a one-horse open sleigh
He laughed as there I sprawling lie
But quickly drove away.


Now the ground is white
Go it while you’re young
Take the girls tonight
Medford Square image. Click for full size.
By Roger W. Sinnott, December 24, 2011
4. Medford Square
The marker is at the left (nearer) end of the long building at left and is just visible between two cars.
sing this sleighing song.
Just get a bobtailed bay
Two forty is his speed
Hitch him to an open sleigh
And crack! You'll take the lead.

    — Submitted December 24, 2011.

Categories. Arts, Letters, MusicEntertainment
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Roger W. Sinnott of Chelmsford, Massachusetts. This page has been viewed 818 times since then and 10 times this year. This page was the Marker of the Week Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by Roger W. Sinnott of Chelmsford, Massachusetts.   3. submitted on , by J. J. Prats of Springfield, Virginia.   4. submitted on , by Roger W. Sinnott of Chelmsford, Massachusetts. • J. J. Prats was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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