Earliest Christmas Audio Recordings Yet

The Cromwell Wall family of England had a wax cylinder phonograph on which they recorded family events, including Christmas celebrations, from 1902 to 1917. The Museum of London obtained the cylinders in 2008, and now they are digitized for all to hear.

The sound is thought to be the oldest Christmas recordings on record, as they date back to 1902. There’s even one from Christmas Day that year of the family singing Angels from the Realms of Glory and We Wish You a Merry Christmas.

It was an unusual find at the time, not only because of the age and good condition, but because the phonograph and cylinders were so expensive in 1902. To record so much, let alone own one in the first place, required considerable wealth.

A video at Geek.com tells how the sound was recovered digitally, and has sample sound clips. Link to story. Link to recordings. -via Fark

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