Christmas in New York: The Gift of the Magi

The creative spirit of Christmas is strong in New York City!

Writer William Sydney Porter, aka, O. Henry.

On this date, back in 1905, O Henry’s classic Christmas story “The Gift of the Magi” was published in The New York World newspaper. The plot and its twist ending are well-known, and the ending is generally considered an example of comic irony. It was written in just a few hours in a booth inside Pete’s Tavern on 18th Street and Irving Place in Manhattan.

Pete’s Tavern in Manhattan.

The tavern – and the famous booth – are still open to customers today.

The story is about a young married couple and how they deal with the challenge of buying secret Christmas gifts for each other with very little money. It is a powerful sentimental story with a moral lesson about gift-giving.

You can listen to the story in the audio video presentation below:

Plaque affixed to the wall outside Pete’s Tavern (18th Street and Irving Place in NYC).

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