Reprinted from the Anne T. Kent California Room, Community Newsletter December 14, 2016
In 1903, the high-achieving elementary school students of Sausalito were honored with a visit from Santa at Buena Vista Park.
The December 12, 1903 San Francisco Call reported:
“Sausalito families were all astir yesterday and children were tidied up and made to look spick and span in their prettiest costumes and then, with smiling faces, they wended their way to Buena Vista Park, where awaiting them was a huge Christmas tree laden with…presents that benevolent Santa Claus brings to all good and obedient school children at Yuletide.”
“The recipients of all the numerous good things were scholars of the primary and higher grades of the Sausalito grammar school and in recognition of their quite admirable scholastic showing Mayor Jacques Thomas, with the aid of generous neighbors, was enabled to purchase presents for every one of the 300 pupils.”
“It was 1 o’clock when the children arrived at the park and…they were allowed to take their places around the handsome Christmas tree to admire the myriad of vari-colored candles and covet the ribbon-tied boxes and brunette and blond-haired dolls and muslin bags of sweetmeats.”
“They were also permitted to glance upon the cases of neatly published books of fairy tales and stories…. Charles Bright, alias Santa Claus, clothed in the flaming red robe…and long beard, white as driven snow, came from behind the great tree with greater things tucked away in his arms…. He made himself at ease with the gaping young ones and kept up his kindly reputation by presenting to each…a present….”