Happy Birthday to You!: The Mystery Behind the Most Famous Song in the World

Overview

To each of us who has enjoyed a piece of birthday cake, the strains of "Happy Birthday to You" are as familiar to our ears as our own names. Yet how many people know the origin of the tune and its place in American history? In 1889 Patty and Mildred Hill, two Kentucky sisters, wrote the words and composed the melody of "Good Morning to All" for their kindergarten students. Initially written as a simple greeting and welcome, they later changed the words and birthday celebrations were forever altered. But it wasn't...
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Overview

To each of us who has enjoyed a piece of birthday cake, the strains of "Happy Birthday to You" are as familiar to our ears as our own names. Yet how many people know the origin of the tune and its place in American history? In 1889 Patty and Mildred Hill, two Kentucky sisters, wrote the words and composed the melody of "Good Morning to All" for their kindergarten students. Initially written as a simple greeting and welcome, they later changed the words and birthday celebrations were forever altered. But it wasn't until 1935 that the sisters' song was fully copyrighted and their names duly credited. Margot Theis Raven, the author of such inspiring children's books as Mercedes and the Chocolate Pilot and Let Them Play, relates the story behind one of the most famous and oft-sung songs in the world.Margot Theis Raven's award-winning books are often set against powerful historical backdrops such as America's civil rights period. Her books for Sleeping Bear Press include America's White Table and Let Them Play, which was named a 2006 Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People. Margot lives in Charleston, South Carolina. Chris Soentpiet's numerous books include My Brother Martin and Peacebound Trains and reflect his interest in people, history, and culture. He has won several prestigious awards such as the International Reading Association Children's Book of the Year. Chris lives in Flushing, New York.
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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal

Gr 1-4

The story behind these words and music is truly an American tale of a large loving family blessed to share their creativity with those around them. Two Kentucky sisters, Patty and Mildred Hill-teacher and composer-created the song as a second verse to their "Good Morning to You" melody, which was shared with Ms. Patty's kindergarten class on a daily basis. A lovely succession of watercolor paintings depicts the latter half of the 19th century in Louisville and illuminates the thoughtful expressions and joyful faces of the Hill family. With a final historical note, readers find the record of the Hills' service to education and eventual recognition in the academic world. Forget what you remember about Irving Berlin's connection with the tune-the copyright for this title was correctly assigned 45 years after it was composed, an eye-opener for history and trivia lovers in all libraries.-Mary Elam, Forman Elementary School, Plano, TX

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781585361694
  • Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press
  • Publication date: 8/20/2008
  • Series: Sleeping Bear -- True Stories
  • Pages: 40
  • Sales rank: 1,012,966
  • Age range: 5 - 11 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.20 (w) x 11.20 (h) x 0.40 (d)

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