Santa Claus brought pleasure to hundreds of children on Thursday afternoon when he jumped from the clouds and landed in Marietta. It was the annual Christmas party staged by Marietta merchants.
The idea of having Santa Claus travel by airplane, instead of in the time-honored sledge drawn by reindeer, proved a popular innovation, and established a precedent that may be made the rule of the future.
Many thousands of people thronged the streets to welcome the visitor.
Soon after 3 o'clock on Thursday afternoon "Old Kris" came out of the North in his plane and, flying at an altitude of about a half-mile, soared over the city announcing his arrival by exploding aerial bombs. He "stunted" across the city, turned back toward the fair grounds and, carrying his pack of good-will, dropped with his parachute to a pretty landing. Many were on hand to welcome him and there was a scramble of little folks to grasp his hand.
The landing ceremonies over, the bright-clad, bewhiskered visitor was taken into an automobile and driven to the Front Street armory on the steps of which a party had been arranged. Crowds packed the grounds about the building, jammed the street for almost a block and fought for a closer view of the city's guest.
Harry E. Schramm of the Chamber of Commerce presented Santa Claus to the crowd and the old fellow got busy at once with his program. He made awards of gifts on behalf of 98 Marietta merchants and two numbers were drawn for each of them. The first number has been posted by the merchant offering the prize that it awards and it will hold until 10 o'clock on Saturday night. If it is not presented by that time, the second number will be posted as the winning one.
Following this ceremony Santa Claus, with boys and girls all but mobbing him, started on a tour of the business district. He carried a large mail sack and many letters that had been mailed to him in recent weeks were gathered from the boxes in the stores. With these safely tucked away for future reference he left for the landing field to continue his journey to the homes of other waiting children.