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 Entertainment

We’re going to keep on ‘Keeping Up’ with Kardashians

kimkardashian

Reality TV's most famous family is sticking around for four more years.

in Viral Videos

What it would sound like if Ice T voiced cartoons

14-overlay5

"Scooby Doo" and "Dora the Explorer" would sound a whole lot different.

in Viral Videos

2-year-old sings National Anthem, makes America better

12-overlay7

Adorable Trent Harris singing the "Star Spangled Banner" before the start of a high school basketball game will make you proud to be an American.

in Entertainment, Weird

Forget the Double-Down, KFC launches edible coffee cups

kfccup

Kentucky Fried Chicken is testing edible coffee cups in some of its stores. Maybe next they'll try edible chicken.

in Entertainment

Drew Barrymore plans tell-all book of essays

barrymore

The "Charlie's Angels" star will lift the lid on the details of her wild youth and Hollywood career.