News

Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus

Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus

THE REAL VIRGINIA: Virginia Douglas, assistant principal of P.S. 31, poses next to the Christmas tree in her home in New York City on Dec. 21, 1945. When she was eight, the former Virginia O'Hanlon wrote a letter to the New York Sun asking, "Please tell me the truth, is there a Santa Claus?" Her letter evoked the famous Santa Claus editorial in 1897, which said, "Yes, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist." Photo: Associated Press

When 8-year-old Virginia O’Hanlon was unsure about whether Santa Claus was for real, her father told her to write a letter to the newspaper.

In 1897, O’Hanlon’s friends began to have their doubts about Santa Claus.

She then turned to her father for advice. He suggested she write a letter to the New York Sun, telling her that if she saw it in the Sun, it would be proof enough of Santa’s existence.

So, she wrote to the newspaper pleading, “Please tell me the truth, is there a Santa Claus?”

Her letter was handed over to editor Francis Church, who, it seems, was rather reluctant to do anything about it all.

He didn’t exactly have the reputation of being the most gentle man on the staff of the newspaper.

But his response has become a part of Christmas lore.

He told Virginia her friends were wrong, that they had been affected by “skepticism.”

He went on to say, “Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus.” He told Virginia that Santa exists “as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist.”

And in his response to little Virginia’s letter, Church concluded, “A thousand years from now, maybe 10 times 10,000 years from now,” Santa “will continue to make glad the hearts of children.”

The letter became the inspiration for “Miracle on 34th Street.”

Recent News

in Music

Glen Matlock denies new Sex Pistols reunion

John Lydon, right, and Glen Matlock of The Sex Pistols perform at the Roxy in West Hollywood, Calif., on Thursday, Oct. 25, 2007.

Sex Pistols star Glen Matlock dashes fans' hopes of another reunion by insisting he hasn't had any contact with John Lydon in five years.

in Entertainment

Fans support campaign to keep Sean Bean alive in new show

British actor Sean Bean arrives for a special UK screening of Cleanskin, at the Mayfair Hotel in central London, Monday, March 5, 2012.

The "Game of Thrones" actor has died more than 20 times in his career, and fans want it to stop.

in Entertainment

‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ sequel set for 2017

Guardians Of The Galaxy

Marvel unveils plans to press ahead with a sequel to "Guardians of the Galaxy," days before the superhero movie even hits theaters.

in Entertainment

‘Lucy,’ ‘Hercules’ beat expectations at box offices

Updated
This image released by Paramount Pictures shows, from left, Aksel Hennie as Tydeus, Ingrid Bolsø Berdal as Atalanta, Dwayne Johnson as Hercules, Reece Ritchie as Iolaus, and Rufus Sewell as Autolycus in a scene from "Hercules."

Scarlett Johansson's "Lucy" collected $44 million at the domestic box office, outmuscling "Hercules" which took in $29 million.

in Viral Videos

Baby elephant meets a cat

Elephant Meets Cat

Maybe this elephant is more of a dog lover?