Dear Santa: Funny and touching Christmas letters from children in the 1800s, 1900s

Associated Press
Letters to Santa Claus have a magical Christmas power all their own — they share a child's hopes and dreams, contain wishes innocent enough to draw tears, and even save the day in the classic holiday film, "Miracle on 34th Street."

Here's a look at letters sent to Santa Claus and addressed to places ranging from Snow Land, North Land and Ice Land (Chicago Daily Tribune, 1901) to Sleigh Drawn by Eight Reindeers, High up in the sky over New York City, Reindeer Street and even a rather specific 2732 Ice Street, Frigid Zone, North Pole (The New York Times, 1874 and 1932).

Each of these letters was sent to or collected by newspapers from across the United States in the late 1800s and early-to-mid 1900s, and then published.

Many of the letters contained here were answered by kindly souls acting with the impulses of the jolly old elf himself.
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Midwest City, USA, OK

This was really interesting. I like seeing how small children wrote and thought during a time that was so long ago, yet not very long ago at all.

Riverton, UT

Children from earlier days had very good manners! I really enjoyed reading this article and would hope that kids today would emulate the same level of respect and humility.

Midwest Mom
Soldiers Grove, WI

I find nothing endearing about stacks of old mail that were sent because children were taught a lie. I taught my children that Santa Clause was a story and not a real person. I don't think that the pure faith of a child should be toyed with. There is enough wonder and magic in learning how to be good, giving towards others and having faith in God. Let them address their pleas to Him. It's a shame that so many children lose faith in faith because they were set up, when they were little. Their credulity should not be seen as a source for adult entertainment. The wonder of the birth of the Savior and how His atonement can change our lives is enough. The myth of Santa Clause is it's own "war on Christmas."

Phoenix, AZ

Midwest Mom, I don't know anyone who lost their faith in God because they believed in Santa Claus as a kid, including the current and past prophets of our church. Everyone I know believed in Santa as a kid and the vast majority of them are still faith-filled Christians. The few atheists I know were raised as such and Santa had nothing to do with it. I'm sorry if you had a bad experience growing up, but millions of Christians have managed to handle a childhood belief in Santa Claus just fine without it impacting their faith in God. Please don't be a "scrooge" by labeling us as liars, as you pretty much have done in your post.

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