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“Happy Birthday” is a song that is sung to celebrate the anniversary of a person’s birth. The song’s lyrics have been translated into at least 18 languages. The melody of “Happy Birthday to You” comes from the song “Good Morning to All”, which has been attributed to American siblings Patty Hill and Mildred J. Hill in 1893.
Patty Hill was a kindergarten principal in Louisville, Kentucky, developing various teaching methods at what is now the Little Loomhouse. Mildred was a pianist and composer. The sisters used “Good Morning to All” as a song that young children would find easy to sing. The combination of melody and lyrics in “Happy Birthday to You” first appeared in print in 1912, and probably existed even earlier.
The origins date back to the late 19th century, Patty and Mildred J. Hill introduced the song “Good Morning to All” to a kindergarten class in Kentucky. Years later, in 1893, they published the tune in their songbook Song Stories for the Kindergarten. The Hill sisters likely copied the tune and lyrical idea from other popular and similar nineteenth-century songs including “Happy Greetings to All”, “Good Night to You All” also from 1858, “A Happy New Year to All” from 1875, and “A Happy Greeting to All”, published 1885.