Bridging the Urban Landscape: Photonote: Syria Santas
CAPTION: Syria Santas; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
NOTES: "Santa Claus to Tots. Members of the
Syria Temple play Santa Claus to thousands of orphans each
Christmas. This picture was taken in 1920 The three men left
front are Joseph N. Mackrell, Register of Wills; J. Milton
Ryall, vice chairman; James McDonald, secretary." Pittsburgh
Sun-Telegraph, Color-Gravure Section, 31 December 1930.
Syria had Syria Santas from 1920 to approximately 1945. Money
was contributed by the members of Syria to buy Christmas gifts
for orphans. These nobles would dress as shown in picture and
visit the orphanages in Allegheny, Butler, Westmoreland and
surrounding counties on December 24th each year with a gift
for each orphan. This custom was discontinued about 1946.
PHOTOGRAPHER: Frank E. Bingaman.
HEADING: Pittsburgh. Events. 1920.; Pittsburgh. Groups.
From the Collections of the Pennsylvania Department,
Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh: