From the first Holiday Season since this website began, it has published a growing number of stories revealing the secret origins behind the mythic aspects of the annual celebration, from the wreath to gift-wrapping, eggnog to the Elves, the North Pole to Christmas cookies.
While the figure of Santa Claus has now come to be credited with all of these aspects familiar to people who mark the Holiday Season for its religious significance or as an annual time of goodwill – or both, each aspect of Christmas evolved because of the endless flow of loving kindness a series of individual women displayed throughout the ages. And each of these women served as a Mrs. Claus, marrying the man himself and assuming a place in the world where they could do the most good for the most people.
They came from every walk of life and from every part of the globe. The one factor which marked them as different from others, however, was that each had such overwhelming compassion they were unable to see people by mundane factors like profession, age, ability, race, wealth, gender, physicality, faith or culture and instead perceived every person on the globe by the degree of their goodness.
It was as if they viewed the people of the world from a point at the very top, responding to the weakness of fears they noticed in others with the strength of trust. They each one of them did this without wanting others to know or care about themselves. They sought no credit. Who they were and what they did, however, was being recorded in one large book. Each time a new one of these women emerged, their story would be added to the old volume of endless pages. The book was a secret from the rest of the world, intended only for whoever was serving as the current Mrs. Claus, to find inspiration when they felt challenged by war, hate, violence, deceit, bigotry, greed and other overwhelmingly dark forces among the people on earth.
All of their stories can be confirmed by historical and cultural facts. Did these women truly exist and do these things? The one truth we know is that each became a Mrs. Claus for a period of time, working with the different generations of Santa Clauses over the centuries.
Whoever owns this book has never attempted to retrieve it, but since this Secret History of Mrs. Claus was never intended for the world at large to know, the book’s caretaker permits their individual stories to be published only once a year, with new ones being introduced along with those familiar to readers of the series. These stories will pop up in between the regular articles on this website.
The Secret History of Mrs. Claus series, however, will entirely vanish by the New Year.
The Old Volume, Part I
Before the re-construction began, a tall, metal set of locker units was pulled from a corner, long forgotten and covered in dust. Only one of the units, at the very top, was locked. The lock was broken.
In it was discovered a small leather pouch.
In the pouch was placed a thick book, bound in red velvet and locked with gold clasps. A local locksmith was found who could carefully unleash the clasps.
Composed of some unknown parchment, the pages felt like papyrus yet proved so indestructible that no page could be torn, ripped or even stained.
As the book was opened and the pages turned, a heretofore untold saga began to unfold.
Written upon these pages were entries made in a multitude of languages, some decipherable only by ancient language experts, all made approximately a half a century apart. The last recorded entry in the book was written in English in 1946. It told the unbelievable story of an American known as Suzy Q. Smith.
Research revealed her real name, used before World War II, to be Suzanna Quinones Schmidt.
Further efforts to discern this woman’s true identity turned up documentation that her mother’s family came from the village of San Antonio in Mexico and whose father’s ancestors came from Germany and settled the town of Gruene, Texas, which is pronounced by locals as “Green.”.
She was born and raised in Rising Star Texas but little else about her can be confirmed.
The story claimed that she had been one of those women pilots who formed the Women’s Air Service Pilots, (the WASP), and then an airplane assembly line worker, a “Rosie the Riveter,” at a Philadelphia factory. A name which seemed to match her own, however, was oddly erased so thoroughly from the official record of the WASP and no employment record of her working in an airplane factory could be located.
In fact, no further documentation on Miss Schmidt has been located to date.
It’s as if she vanished from the face of the earth and gone off into thin air.
Within the final entry of the ancient book, however, has been pasted an advertisement of the era depicting the fictional figure of “Mrs. Santa Claus,” and the model bears an uncanny resemblance to the missing Suzy Schmidt. Was it some sort of strange joke, a cruel coincidence – or is something else afoot?
Making public the book’s claim about what happened to this young woman during the first Holiday Season following the end of World War II, also provides clues to an even older “cold case” file, from 1893.
It had always been assumed that the daughter of Harvey T. Frost, founder and owner of the thriving Frost Bakeries had been inexplicably abducted with sudden force from the quiet street of the family home in Hollidaysburg, Pennsylvania and met with a terrible end.
She was never heard from again.
“Miss Carolyn” as the loquacious and popular young woman was called, had been last seen making her regular delivery of donated baked treats to the local old age home and orphanage.
A handwritten recipe for “winter winkie” cookies pasted in the second to last chapter of the mysterious book, however, was recently discovered to match that of a popular seasonal sweet sold at the Frost Bakeries in the early 20th century in the town of Hollidaysburg, Pennsylvania. Early forensic studies indicate it to be in the long-missing girl’s handwriting.
This last entry in the ancient book, about Miss Smith, has nevertheless helped decipher the story chronicled by the entire work, especially when matched against the very first entry, which carried a familiar icon of the saint known as Lucia, or Lucy.
The entire book has since come to be studied by a mere handful of mythology scholars who have now woven a full millennium-old saga from it, after painstaking translations of each chapter as The Secret History of Mrs. Claus.
In the weeks ahead, up until Christmas, will be a series excerpted from some of this mysterious text, which seems to have been kept more as a private family genealogical record rather than a history to be revealed to the world.
In light of the perpetual world fascination of the mid-winter holiday celebrated on every continent and by every culture, be it the Moon Festival of China to Saturnalia of Ancient Rome to its most popular name and form of “Christmas” around the world today, a copy of the translation has been obtained and its secret code will be broken here to make this story widely known, so it might spread to all the countries who may very well have given the world their own Mrs. Claus – but don’t even know it.
Revealing portions of The Secret History of Mrs. Claus will answer lingering questions about what has come down through the ages as customs and traditions of this season.
Why was the North Pole chosen?
What made the reindeer fly? Who are the elves?
Why gingerbread men and candy canes?
Who decides the Toy of the Year?
How did the wreath come into popularity?
And what about that systematic delivery of gifts on Christmas Eve?
THE CHARACTERS AND STORIES OF THIS SERIES ARE PROTECTED UNDER COPYRIGHT