Santa has nine flying reindeer who carry his sleigh across the world on Christmas Eve. Santa's reindeer made their first appearance in the 1823 poem by Clement C. Moore, "A Visit from Saint Nicholas," commonly referred to as "'Twas the Night Before Christmas."
Clement C. Moore's poem included eight reindeer: Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donder and Blitzen. In 1949, the spelling of Donder was changed to Donner, when Gene Autry recorded "Rudolph, the Red Nosed Reindeer," thus adding a ninth iconic reindeer. Rudolph was conceived in 1939 by Robert L. May for the Montgomery Ward's department stores based in Chicago.