I imagine most of us know the Disney cartoon based on this famous story by Washington Irving, but have you ever read or listened to the original version?
The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is a short story that was published in 1820. The setting is Tarrytown, New York, which is near the Hudson River. I worked in that town once, and I can tell you it is beautiful in the fall. There is an old Dutch graveyard there, and it is reputedly where the infamous bridge of the story was located. I visited there once in October and enjoyed a quiet, autumn afternoon there; the foliage was stunning. Now, Sleepy Hollow has a Halloween festival and I imagine it is more crowded and less tranquil!
I bought this beautiful version of The Legend of Sleepy Hollow at Barnes and Noble. I enjoyed reading it, although it took me a little time to get accustomed to the elaborate, though often amusing, prose. But I was glad to read it in it’s entirety. Also, isn’t the binding gorgeous?
Here are two audio versions I found on YouTube to share. The first is a simplified and abridged version that is read at a slower pace. It is intended for early English learners, but I think children would also enjoy this version. I like it, as well. It is produced by Voice of America. Take a listen…
The second version is a Librivox reading of the original, unabridged story. Since this is in the public domain, you can download the file from the website (link in the description) for free, if you like. This version is nearly an hour and a half long, If you are pressed for time, maybe you could listen to the story in the car while commuting or traveling, or while making jewelry, knitting or doing some routine task.
Let me know what you think of The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.