Christmas Stories

"Christmas isn't a season. It's a feeling." Edna Ferber

Christmas Stories

We have collected over 100 Great Christmas Stories, Books, Poems, and Christmas Carols for you to enjoy; stories to kindle your holiday spirit. We list the more unusual titles in Off-Beat Christmas Stories, followed by Christmas Books, Christmas Poems, and traditional Christmas Carols and Christmas Cards

Families will enjoy sharing our collection of Children's Christmas Stories

Titles in this top section are best for reading with kids about 10 years and up, and tend to be more sentimental.

The Little Match Girl by Hans Christian Andersen
A sad and beautiful story to remind us all to be thankful and charitable and to appreciate what we have at Christmas time.
The Gift of the Magi by O. Henry
A young married couple-- rich in love, poor in money-- buy each other gifts and teach all of us about sacrifice and giving.
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
One of the most enduring Christmas stories of all time, a morality tale of the bitter old miser, Ebeneezer Scrooge, who has a change of heart after visits from the ghosts of Christmases Past, Present, and Yet to Come.
The Elves and the Shoemaker
The Elves and the Shoemaker
The Elves and the Shoemaker by The Brothers Grimm
A poor shoemaker and his wife are down to their last piece of leather when their fortunes change thanks to help from talented elves.
The Fir-Tree by Hans Christian Andersen
A tree can't wait to grow up and achieve great things, rather than appreciate the present.
The Last Dream of Old Oak by Hans Christian Andersen
An unlikely conversation between and old oak and a mayfly that delightfully illustrates the wonder of perspective.
Christmas Jenny by Mary E. Wilkins Freeman
"Bein' a missionary to robins an' starvin' chippies an' little deaf an' dumb children is jest as good as some other kinds, an' that's what she is."
A Christmas Dream, and How It Came to be True by Louisa May Alcott
A children's take on Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol, Alcott shares a delightful story from a young girl's point of view.
Christmas; or, The Good Fairy by Harriet Beecher Stowe
A precious story about the joy of thoughtful gift-giving and the appreciation of recipients.
Papa Panov's Special Christmas by Leo Tolstoy
An old man welcomes strangers into his home, a story of compassion and kindness.
The Night Before Christmas: A Morality by William Dean Howells
Clarence Fountain is quite cynical about the pretense of self-deception about Santa Claus as his children grow older; that is, until his family leads him to a complete change of heart.
Merry Christmas by Stephen Leacock
A man struggling to write a Christmas story gets a visit from Father Time to discuss what's wrong with Christmas, then is treated to Father Christmas' arrival, rekindling his true belief in the season's magic.
A Stolen Christmas by Mary E. Wilkins Freeman
Marg'ret had given up hope of "getting up a notch" in life, and now had to resolve her remorse for stealing that parcel.
The Gospel According to Joan by Mary E. Wilkins Freeman
Who was teaching whom about charity and generosity? Freeman delivers some unexpected twists, a perfect holiday story about compassion for those in need.
The Other Wise Man by Henry van Dyke
This is the story of the fourth wise man who did not arrive with his brethren and whose desires were denied, yet accomplished.
Cousin Tribulation's Story by Louisa May Alcott
A heartwarming story about an oatmeal parade and "angel-children" who help a family in need.
What the Bell Saw and Said by Louisa May Alcott
Six bell spirits gather to assess the world's state of affairs on Christmas Eve; Alcott's State of the Union address, had she occasion to deliver one.
Christmas at Red Butte by Lucy Maud Montgomery
By the author of Anne of Green Gables, this story is set in the harsh plains of Saskatchewan. Sometimes the best times come at the hardest times.
Whistling Dick's Christmas Stocking by O. Henry
A story about a railway tramp who retrieves a package from a young lady's wagon.
A Country Christmas by Louisa May Alcott
Sophie invites her dear friend Emily for a real old-fashioned Christmas frolic away from the city.
How Christmas Came to the Santa Maria Flats by Elia W. Peattie
How will Santa deliver presents? The lease says no peddlers or agents can enter the apartment building-- how will be the most famous toy peddler get in?
Captain Eli's Best Ear by Frank Stockton
"If I'd only slept with my hard-o'-hearin' ear up," he said to himself, "I'd never have heard it."
The First Christmas of New England by Harriet Beecher Stowe
Stowe describes the arrival of the Mayflower and the settlers' very first holiday celebrations.
The Christmas Ghost by Mary E. Wilkins Freeman
Jane White came to realize that love and kindness were not such strangers upon the earth as she had thought.
Betty's Bright Idea by Harriet Beecher Stowe
Celebrating the joy of giving, Betty brainstorms thoughtful gifts each recipient will appreciate the most.
Christmas in Poganuc by Harriet Beecher Stowe
Dolly is too young to join the other colonialists as they gather at the church Christmas greens to celebrate.
Christmas by Washington Irving
The infamous headless horseman author offers a lovely Christmas reverie about its festivities.
Uncle Richard's New Year Dinner by Lucy Maud Montgomery
Nothing melts an old family feud like a home cooked dinner from the heart to start the year off right. By the author of Anne of Green Gables.

The Christmas Stories in this section are great for readers looking for a more serious and contemplative perspective

What Christmas is as We Grow Older by Charles Dickens
A personal and optimistic view savoring Christmas as a time for reconciliation of our losses and hopes.
A Christmas Tree by Charles Dickens
An old man reminisces about his childhood Christmases.
How the Captain Made Christmas by Thomas Nelson Page
A train conductor shares memories about home and promises of love on this Christmas ride to New Orleans.
At Christmas Time by Anton Chekhov
Illiterate parents commission a letter which delights their estranged married daughter in St. Petersburg.
Vanka by Anton Chekhov
An orphaned boy writes a letter to his grandfather on Christmas Eve, sharing his sparse but warm remembrances of family.
A Christmas-Eve Suit by Edward Payson Roe
A young, eligible lawyer tries to decide which lady will suit him best.
A Russian Christmas Party by Leo Tolstoy
The family is on the brink of ruin, so Nicolas' mother pushes an arranged marriage, though he loves a poor girl.
Susie Rolliffe's Christmas by Edward Payson Roe
Answering the call after Bunker Hill, Zeke thought fighting the British would be like an expedition with the same elements as a bear hunt; then Susie got his attention.
Christmas Eve in War Times by Edward Payson Roe
This story concerns the fate of Private Anson Marlow, Union soldier.
A Burglar's Christmas by Willa Cather
In an unpredictable and unforgiving world, sometimes deception and permission may be the greatest gifts of all.
A College Santa Clause by Ralph Henry Barbour
A story of friendship and compassion when classmates spend the holidays on campus.
The Thin Santa Claus by Ellis Parker Butler
There's chickens stolen, toober-chlosis bugs, and now Mrs. Gratz may actually believe in Santa after all.
Keeping Christmas by Henry van Dyke
An inspiring Christmas Day sermon.
The First Christmas Tree by Henry van Dyke
Saint Boniface translates a parable of a soldier into the realities of life.
A Dream-story: The Christmas Angel by Henry van Dyke
A story about what angels do: "There is no cure for this evil, but by the giving of greater force to the good hand."
A Christmas Sermon by Robert Louis Stevenson
"If we require so much of ourselves, shall we not require much of others?"
The Christmas Wreck by Frank Stockton
No use being in a hurry for a good wind or Christmas, both will come when they're ready.
Reginald's Christmas Revel
Reginald's Christmas Revel

Off-Beat Christmas Stories

An Unfinished Christmas Story by O. Henry
O. Henry's Christmas reverie and sharp digs leave us to finish his story.
Reginald's Christmas Revel by H.H. Munro (SAKI)
Reginald's not getting on Santa's "good" list after this caper.
A Chaparral Christmas Gift by O. Henry
A shoot-em-up story featuring Frio Kid and a memorable Christmas wedding. Will he be back this year?
Christmas by Injunction by O. Henry
A prospector named Cherokee thought he hit a gold vein and invited all his friends to start a town.
Reginald on Christmas Presents by H.H. Munro (SAKI)
When will Reginald's relatives get gift-giving right?
A Hint for Next Christmas by A.A. Milne
Best known for creating Winnie the Pooh, A.A. Milne makes a strong case for travel-size gifts.
Bertie's Christmas Eve by H.H. Munro (SAKI)
Munro's wit and satire of Edwardian society play out perfectly in the Steffinks' cow-house at Christmas.
The Christmas Present by Richmal Crompton
A peculiar and amusing Christmas story. What's that, you say? I can't hear you. Sometimes the best Christmas present doesn't cost a penny.
Peace on Earth, Good-Will to Dogs by Eleanor Hallowell Abbott
If you don't like dogs or Christmas stories, don't read this story! Flame is a minister's daughter who is eager to help the new neighbor.
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
Little Women

Christmas Books

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
The coming-of-age story of the March sisters Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy as they grow up during the Civil War.
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
The classic story of the Christmas Eve transformation of the bitter and miserly Ebenezer Scrooge after being visited by ghosts of Christmases Past, Present and Yet to Come.
The Cricket on the Hearth
The Cricket on the Hearth
The Chimes by Charles Dickens
Dickens' novella is a goblin story of some bells that rang an old year out and a new year in.
The Cricket on the Hearth by Charles Dickens
Dickens' novella is a fairy tale of home, delivered in three chirps (chapters).
The Romance of a Christmas Card by Kate Douglas Wiggin
Wonderful events unfold when a minister's wife creates Christmas cards inspired by her friend.
Old Christmas by Washington Irving
The first chapter reads as a stand-alone story or enjoy the whole book. Christmas is the season for "the fire of hospitality in the hall" and "the flame of charity in the heart."

Christmas Poems

Christmastide by H.P. Lovecraft
An exceedingly bright and cheery poem (especially for Lovecraft).
The Three Kings by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
A beautiful poem describing the events leading to the adoration of the Magi.
Christmas Trees by Robert Frost
A poem with perfect New England sensibilities, a city man helps a Vermonter see the value of his trees.
Carol by Kenneth-Grahame
The author of The Wind in the Willows offers a joyful Christmas poem.
Christmas Carol by Sara Teasdale
Teasdale's poem of how the kings, shepherds, and wise men all converged to hear the angels sing all night at the Nativity.
Christmas Bells by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Ring in the holidays with Longfellow's festive poem.
The True Meaning of Christmas (recited by Linus) from The Bible, King James Version, Luke
In this unforgettable scene, Linus recites scripture from the Book of Luke to explain what Christmas is all about in A Charlie Brown Christmas.
Christmas in India by Rudyard Kipling
Christmas is different when celebrated away from true Home.
Auld Lang Syne by Robert Burns
Meaning "old long since" this poem is usually sung to bring in the new year or other sentimental occasions.
We Three Kings at Christmas
Enjoy singing Christmas Carols!

Brownie Rust Craft (1950)

Enjoy our collection of Christmas Stories for Children

You might also enjoy our Vintage Christmas & New Year Cards

Have a favorite story you'd like us to add? Contact us via Facebook or Twitter

facebook share button twitter share button reddit share button share on pinterest pinterest

Return to American Literature Home Page