I read a delightful little children’s book: General Lee and Santa Claus about 3 little Southern girls after the War who were upset with Santa Claus because he had not brought them any presents for 4 years. Their mother was bedridden and their father, who had bravely marched off to war had not been seen since. He was a spotter for the Confederate army and his balloon had been shot down. No one could find him and he had been missing for two years.

Since the girls were angry with Santa Claus they decided to write General Lee to see if he could help them. Of course he wrote back immediately and told them that Santa Claus was one of the best friends that little Southern children have. The reason he had not brought toys for four years was because General Lee had asked him to sell the toys and use the money for things the soldiers needed and that is what Santa did.

Suffice it to say, the 3 little girls did receive a wonderful Christmas present that year, but I hope you will want to read the story for yourself, so I can’t tell you what it was.

The original version was printed in 1867 because the author Louise Clark wanted to create a story that would attest to the admiration and affection Southerners felt for General Lee, as well as project his new role as the mitigator of Southern defeat. By pairing Lee with Santa Claus, the most unlikely of partners, Mrs. Clark created a delightful holiday story for children.

It will make a lovely Christmas story for your children or grandchildren, as well as for you. I love children’s books, don’t you?