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CSBG Archive

Golden Age Christmas – Donald Loses His Nephew’s Letter to Santa

Welcome to the latest edition of Golden Age Christmas, where we will feature a different Golden Age Christmas comic book story every day from now until Christmas Eve!

Today we look at a tale from Walt Disney’s first Christmas Parade comic book in 1949, written and drawn by the great Carl Barks!

Our tale begins with Donald observing some steam shovels hard at work along with his nephews. They mention their letter to Santa Claus, which Donald says he mailed awhile back. As it turns out, though, he is mistaken…

Uncle Scrooge was still a fairly new character at the time (you will definitely be seeing more of Scrooge on this list, including a historic tale that I might be reserving for Christmas Eve!).

I love the visuals of the above panels, with the pair hitting each other with money.

What a great use of Scrooge. He wants to do something nice, but not if Santa gets the credit!

This leads to a truly remarkable sequence where Donald tries to deliver the steam shovel to his nephews from Santa but Scrooge shows up with the steam shovel that HE’S going to give to the nephews.

How awesome is that sequence where they’re fighting each other in steam shovels?!!

With the steam shovels destroyed, Scrooge convinces Donald to dress up as Santa and explain to the boys that he has fallen on hard times and can’t get them a steam shovel. Donald fails miserably (the nephews inadvertently mess him up, including getting him stuck in their chimney!). Scrooge steps in…

Donald has proven Scrooge a fake, but the real losers are the boys…

But then the REAL Santa shows up, and he knows what the boys were REALLY talking about when they said “steam shovel”…

Donald wants help remembering things.

A very cute, inventive and fun Christmas story from the master Barks.


Oh, this one’s good. I think I read it in the Smithsonian Book of Comic Book Comics (which is sooooo good), and it really is wonderful, with that great echoing of the money fight with the steam shovel fight. Great bit at the end with what the boys really want. This is one of those comics that is near perfect.

Bark’s Ducks! :D

There are at least two more great Barks Christmas stories from around this period, and I’m looking forward to seeing both of them this month.

Wonderfull. I have always loved this story.
I hope you will do Christmas on Bear Mountain too!

There are at least two more great Barks Christmas stories from around this period, and I’m looking forward to seeing both of them this month.

I am trying to alternate superhero comic with non-superhero comic, so I’m pretty sure that means that any decent Disney comic from the period WILL be making the list. :)

The only question is, what do I count as the end date for the “Golden Age?” Currently, to be safe I’m only doing comics from the 1940s, but should I branch into the early 1950s? That’d obviously open up some more Barks stories.

I assume there are some good Little Lulu Christmas stories, so whatever “end date” allows for some of them, I’d go with (as I think they would be into the ’50s).

Really, is someone going to complain that something “isn’t Golden Age”?

Oh, wait, it’s the internet. I forgot.

“Awful unlawful” is my phrase of the day.

Brian, is Scrooge McDuck the original inspiration for Wolverine? I’m pretty sure the original text between Scrooge and the Judge was “Be careful, Bub! I’m the best at what I do, and what I do isn’t pretty.”

Like Travis, I read this in the Smithsonian Book of Comic Book Comics back in the day & I really enjoyed it. I still have my copy, although the dust jacket has taken a beating over the years.

Whoops! Posting from the day job, so I forgot to log in first. That’s me up above. :)

Oh, that’s delightful.

Asome comic man.:)

I ‘ve read better.:(

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