SC Historical Commission Uncovers ‘Letters to Santa’

DARLINGTON, SC (WBTW) – Every year this time of year, young folks put their final touches on their Christmas lists for Santa

In this social media age, they’re more likely to tweet what they want.

However recently, the Darlington County Historical Commission stumbled across older letters to Santa dating back as early as 1910 through the Great Depression.

“We have tons of folks who come into the building here and want research done and are always looking for obituaries and things like that.  In the course of doing that research I started stumbling across these December Christmas letters,” said Brian Gandy, Director of the Darlington County Historical Commission.

According to the commission, more than a half-century ago, “Letters to Santa” was a popular Christmas custom that persisted for a number of years, but eventually died out and may soon be entirely forgotten.

It was the practice of the county newspapers to publish “Letters to Santa Claus” written by children of Darlington County.

“They are very simplistic.  It is truly the innocence of youth.  They are not really wanting objects that are going to enhance who they are or what they are.  Its need based letters,” Gandy stated.

In the day in age of iPhones and PlayStations, it’s the story within those letters that serves as a lesson to what’s most important.

“I think people are basically good and I think these letters kind of portray that,” said Gandy.

He has posted excerpts from some the “Letters to Santa” to his blog.

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