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“Yes, Virginia”

Our grandchildren are SO excited about Christmas, and, yes, I’ve got a women’s history tie-in for them: this plaque at the site in New York City that “was once the residence of Virginia O’Hanlon, who in 1897, at the age of eight, wrote a letter to ‘The New York Sun’ asking, ‘Is there a Santa Claus?’ Editor Francis Pharcellus Church was inspired to respond . . . .’Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy.’ Mrs. Laura Virginia O’Hanlon (Douglas) went on to become an educator and a staunch supporter of children’s rights. In 1961, she reaffirmed her belief in the spirit of Santa Claus, saying it ‘stands for love and sharing, the joy of giving, and the extension of it to all people.'”

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