A doll and some money.
As reported by CBC Radio in 1947, these requests to Santa by an 11-year-old girl from a poor New Brunswick family were ordinary enough. But after she attached her letter to a Christmas tree, one of 1.5 million bound for export to the United States, Villa Matchett got an extraordinary response.
Her letter wound up being read over the radio in Natchez, Miss., prompting an outpouring of generosity from across the United States.
In this CBC Radio clip broadcast on this day in 1947, the lucky girl says a reporter’s visit alerted her to the letter’s fate before gifts from across the United States started flowing in. Click here to listen to the CBC clip.
As we celebrate the spirit of giving, below are images of the various coins and stamps of Santa we found produced over the years by Canada Post and the Royal Canadian Mint.