Original Santa Claus

 

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Thomas Nast Santa Claus Collection

Original Santa Claus | Civil War Christmas | Thomas Nast Santa Claus | The Union Christmas | Original Santa Claus Print

 

Thomas Nast's Original  Civil War "Santa Claus In Camp" Print

This is Thomas Nast's earliest published picture of Santa Claus.  Nast is generally credited with creating our popular image of Santa. This illustration appeared in the January 3, 1863 edition of Harper's Weekly, and shows Santa Claus visiting a Civil War Camp.  In the background, a sign can be seen that reads "Welcome Santa Claus." The illustration shows Santa handing out gifts to Children and Soldiers.  One soldier receives a new pair of socks, which would no doubt be one of the most wonderful things a soldier of the time could receive. Santa is pictured sitting on his sleigh, which is being pulled by reindeer.  Santa is pictured with a long white beard, a furry hat, collar and belt.  We can see that many of our modern perceptions of Santa Claus are demonstrated in the 140 year old print.

Thomas Nast Santa Claus Picture

Thomas Nast's Original 1863 "Santa Claus" Picture (Click on Image for Enlarged View)

Perhaps most interesting about this print is the special gift in Santa's hand.  Santa is holding a dancing puppet of none-other-than Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederate States of America.  The likeness to Jefferson Davis is unmistakable.  Even more interesting, Davis appears to have the string tied around his neck, so Santa appears to by Lynching Jefferson Davis! This is a classic Thomas Nast illustration.  This is Nast's first published picture of Santa Claus, and we can see many of our present images of Santa demonstrated in this Civil War illustration.

We hope you enjoy this complete Gallery of the Civil War works of Thomas Nast.  We have created this digital archive for the use of researchers and students of Thomas Nast.  Please remember that the digitally enhanced images are Copyright Son of the South Material.  For more information, contact paul@sonofthesouth.net .

A Note to our Readers

We created this Thomas Nast Gallery to digitally preserve Nast's Civil War work for posterity.  We are now making the original, 140 year old leafs available for a price of $250 each.  The proceeds from the sale of the material will enable us to continue to expand the material featured on our site.  Please contact paul@sonofthesouth.net if you are interested in acquiring one of these original leafs.

 

 

 

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