Good Will To All
With great sadness, the St. Louis Christmas Carols Association mourns the passing of Dr. William H. Danforth, Chairman Emeritus, on September 16, 2020.
A St. Louis icon, in addition to his many contributions to medicine, higher education,
and plant science, he also served first as president, then Chairman of our Board of Trustees from
1956 - 2004. His wisdom, encouragement, and love for the tradition of caroling made a lasting
mark on our organization. He will be deeply missed.
The St. Louis Christmas Carols Association began in 1911, when William H. Danforth and a group of friends decided to bring joy and good will to their neighbors by caroling outside their homes. Initially, they did not plan to collect money, but found listeners gave money when they sang. Being philanthropic businessmen, they donated the funds to the Children's Aid Society, the organization's first beneficiary, to help needy youngsters throughout the following year. Over the years, the number of recipients has grown; in 2018, 35 metro St. Louis area children's agencies benefited from the carolers' collections.
Founder William H. Danforth died in his home on Kingsbury Place in St. Louis on Christmas Eve, 1955, as he waited for carolers from Pilgrim Congregational Church to serenade him. The Danforth family continues to provide leadership for this wonderful organization as it enters its second century. Following William Danforth's death in 1955, his son, Donald Danforth, led the association for a time. Then his grandson, Dr. William H. Danforth, served first as President and then Chairman of the Board. Dr. Danforth became Chairman Emeritus in 2004 as his nephew, Donald Danforth III, took over as Chairman of the Board. Don Danforth is the great grandson of the founder.
Click on the classic logo to see a slide show of the StLCCA's first 100 years.
Click on the photo to listen to an interview with founder
William Danforth, recorded December 8, 1955.
Click on the classic logo to hear St. Louis artist Randy Mayfield and the Kingsbury Place Singers perform his original composition, "Caroling in St. Louis".
- to promote and encourage the tradition of caroling
- to share a message of "Peace on Earth, Good Will to All" in St. Louis neighborhoods and public venues
- to support the work of area agencies serving children with the contributions collected.
In 2020, the St. Louis Christmas Carols Association tradition is continued by a volunteer network of neighborhood Area Chairmen in St. Louis City and St. Louis, St. Charles, and Jefferson Counties, caroling group leaders and the carolers themselves.
The Area Chairmen recruit caroling groups in their area and serve as a local connection between carolers and the StLCCA office, providing supplies and support to their groups.
The office of the St. Louis Christmas Carols Association is centrally located in Clayton and staffed by employees who recruit Area Chairmen and caroling leaders, schedule Public Venue caroling and the Kingsbury Place Singers, provide supplies and support through the caroling season,and facilitate the allocation of carolers' collections at the end of the season.
Where the Money Goes
Money collected by our carolers helps metro St. Louis area agencies serving children.
Collections from the 2019 caroling season aided these metro area agencies:
American Youth Foundation
Annie's Hope - The Center for Grieving Kids
Asthma & Allergy Foundation of America
Caring for Kids
Center for Hearing & Speech
Central Institute for the Deaf
Chad's Coalition for Mental Health
Community Council of St. Charles County
Delta Gamma Center
Epworth Children & Family Services
Every Child's Hope (ECH)
Gene Slay's Girls and Boys Club of St. Louis
Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri
Girls, Inc. of St. Louis
Girls on the Run St. Louis
Good Shepherd School for Children
Grace Hill Settlement House
Iota Phi Lambda Sorority, Future Iota Leaders
Let Me Run StL
Lutheran Association for Special Education
Miriam: The Disability Experts
Normandy Student Assistance Fund
North Side Community School Pre-K Program
Our Little Haven
Room at the Inn
Sherwood Forest Camp, Inc.
SouthSide Early Childhood Center
Youth in Need, Inc.
Our Agencies carol too!
We encourage our agencies to form their own caroling groups and help us help them!
Here are a few examples:
Staff from Asthma & Allergy Foundation of America - StL Chapter have made a tradition of singing for an hour on a weekday afternoon at St. Louis Lambert Airport.
Staff and clients from the Center for Hearing & Speech caroling at The Boulevard St. Louis.
Boatd members from Caring for Kids caroled for residents at Sunrise Assisted Living in Clayton..
Girls on the Run StL staff members had a great time singing on a Saturday morning at Soulard Market!
Staff from Epworth Children and Family Services caroling in a Webster Groves neighborhood...
We love our Girl Scouts!
The partnership between the Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri and the StLCCA has existed for decades! Some 2019 Girl Scout carolers...
...and one of 5 area Fresh Thyme Farmers Markets.
at Soulard Market...
at Missouri Botanical Garden's Garden Glow.
at St. Louis Lambert
at Delmar Gardens...