Statement on Santa Claus, December 9, 1911

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[IMAGE JANE ADDAMS] Miss Jane Addams, of Hull House: The belief in Santa Cause should be encouraged in children. I think the idea a very pretty one, and not for the world would I try to discourage it. The chief value of it lies in giving children an idea of the kindly spirit that walks abroad about Christmas time. All the children in the neighborhood of Hull House believe in Santa Claus. We enter into a conspiracy with their mothers and take the trees to their homes after they are asleep. Then they come next day to see us and gravely tell us all about the mysterious visit of Santa Claus. No one could look into the big, wondering eyes of the little ones and wish to dispel the illusion. They get utilitarian views soon enough. I think the belief in Santa Claus is a good influence in the lives of children. It is a very pretty way of expressing to them the Christmas spirit, and the longer they keep up the belief the better. 

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