In 1946, singing cowboy Gene Autry was riding his horse in what was then known as the Santa Claus Lane Parade in Los Angeles.
Autry was a huge star back then, but on that day, he was merely the warm-up act for the big guy in red behind him and as he rode past, the crowd started chanting "Here comes Santa Claus! Here Comes Santa Claus!"
And there he came, right down Santa Claus Lane. And as soon as he did, the children in the audience forgot all about Gene Autry and his horse.
Far from being insulted, Autry was inspired. As soon as the parade was over, he got to work with songwriter Oakley Haldeman, and the next year Autry released a new Christmas song he called "Here Comes Santa Claus."
Click on the player below to listen to the complete series "The Forgotten History of Our Favorite Christmas Carols" and be sure to subscribe!