I grew up watching classic Christmas cartoons on VHS at my grandparent’s house, and I’ve found that they are still just as fun to watch to me today as they were then. In fact, I like many of the short cartoons on this list a lot better than some of the Christmas specials on television. These Christmas cartoons are short, but they’re very sweet, and I hope you enjoy watching them for free (click on the titles to view the cartoons):
Christmas Comes But Once a Year -1936
In this adorable cartoon, orphan children are disappointed by a Christmas with a shabby tree and broken toys until a kind old inventor comes along and plays Santa. My favorite part of the cartoon is how he takes ordinary items and turns them into extraordinary gifts.
The Pups’ Christmas – 1936
The puppies in this cartoon are just too cute for words! It’s all about the adventures of two tiny puppies (meant to be Christmas presents) that encounter some pretty frightening toys underneath the Christmas tree.
Pluto’s Christmas Tree – 1952
In this classic Disney cartoon, Pluto isn’t too happy with the two inhabitants of Mickey’s Christmas tree, but Mickey convinces him to eventually accept them in honor of the holiday season. I always loved getting to see the inside of the Christmas tree up close as a kid (it was like a whole other world!)
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer – 1948
Before the Rankin/Bass special, there was this classic cartoon with an adorable rendition of the red-nosed reindeer. The animation is a lot different than the other cartoons here, making it pretty unique for its time.
Christmas Night – 1933
This cartoon was made by the creators of Betty Boop, and it features the same classic fun animation that her cartoons did. The King character writes a letter to Santa and sneaks two bums into his castle, where he treats them to a taste of the good life. So what could a King that has everything ask for for Christmas? Well, watch to find out.
Peace on Earth – 1939
This serious cartoon takes a look at a post-apocalyptic world where man has killed himself off by never-ending wars, and a grandpa squirrel tells the story of mankind to his grandchildren on Christmas Eve. It’s one of the few very serious cartoons of this time period and is very historically significant.
Santa’s Surprise – 1947
This cartoon is about Little Audrey and a few other children of many nationalities who stow away on Santa’s sleigh and decide to “help” him around his workshop (beware of the racial stereotypes here).
Snow Foolin’ – 1949
Animals enjoy winter in this cartoon by participating in various events like ice skating, with plenty of visual gags.
Hector’s Hectic Life – 1948
Hector the dog wants to stay indoors on Christmas, and he wants to earn a special Christmas gift. However, this involves having to keep an eye on some very rambunctious (but adorable!) little puppies.
Toys will be Toys – 1949
I always loved cartoons where toys came to life as a kid, and that’s what this one is all about. The toys in a toy shop come to life to participate in a grand parade. It’s not much of a story, but it’s still fun to watch.
I hope these cartoons have put a smile on your face and given you that warm and fuzzy feeling inside. They’re definitely a pleasure to watch, and they’re one of the few things that really make me feel like a kid again.