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Santa Lives! Yes, Virginia, There is a Santa Claus

About the Story

Santa Lives!  Yes, Virginia, There is a Santa Claus In 1897, when Virginia O’Hanlon was 8 years old, she wrote the following letter to The New York Sun on the advice of her father.
“Dear Editor:
I am 8 years old. Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus. Papa says, if you see it in ‘The Sun’ it’s so. Please tell me the truth. Is there a Santa Claus?”
Virginia’s letter was answered by Francis Pharcellus Church, a former Civil War correspondent, and appeared on the editorial page of The New York Sun on Sept. 21, 1897. Entitled “Is There a Santa Claus?” the editorial began with the opening line, “Virginia, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age.” Over the years, Church’s reply has become known for its most famous line, “Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus” and has become the most reprinted editorial to ever run in an English language newspaper. Laura Virginia O’Hanlon Douglas (1889-1971) married Edward Douglas, had a daughter, and became a teacher in New York City in 1912 and a principal in 1935.


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