Shirley Temple Black died on February 10. She was 85. A child star in the Depression era, her movies, merchandise, advertisements and music are the brightest images in an otherwise dark time in America. Christmas was interwoven into most of her movies and a lot of her merchandise. Here’s a quick look at Shirley Temple’s Christmas.
One fan uploaded a video of Christmas scenes from several of Shirley Temple’s movies
Here’s another clip of “Silent Night” from Temple’s movie Heidi.
Here’s “That’s What I Want for Christmas” from Stowaway. How is it that this song isn’t played during the Christmas season?
Although the child singing “I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas” is often thought to be Temple, that hit was recorded in the 1950’s by Gayla Peevey. (Is it the lack of a good stage name that kept her form a big career?)
There is a website devoted to Shirley Temple doll collectibles. (I guess there are hundreds of different Temple dolls issued over the years.) I did not realize that hers was the first celebrity doll ever made. Like Barbie and American Girl dolls today, owning a Shirley Temple doll was all the rage.
Despite my celebration of Shirley Temple and Christmas, one website asserts she didn’t believe in Santa Claus
Temple stopped believing in Santa Claus when she was six, when her mother took her to a department store to meet Father Christmas and he asked for her autograph. Nevertheless, Temple herself became a symbol of hope for America. During the Great Depression, President Franklin D Roosevelt famously said: “As long as our country has Shirley Temple, we will be all right.” Even the young British princesses, Elizabeth and Margaret, were said to be avid Temple fans.