100 years ago: Cork guns, slippers top Santa letter

By Shelby Stewart
Staff Writer
In 1913, bread cost 5 cents per pound, World War I hadn’t started yet and women couldn’t vote. ThomasDadsonPic
That same year Thomas Dadson asked Santa for two cork guns, one for him and one for his brother.
“I found the letter when I was looking through old pictures,” said Gael Tryles. Tryles worked in the Brandon School district for many years and is known to many as the ‘Turkey Lady.’ She found a letter her father wrote to Santa in 1913 in the 80s, and after seeing the letters to Santa in recent editions of The Citizen, she felt compelled to share it.
“I just thought it was cool, just to compare what kids want now,” she said.
Dadson was only 7 when he wrote the letter, and later attended Massachusetts Instituate of Technology as a teenager, work for American Motors as a Chief Range Engineer, and raise his family in Franklin, Mich. until he passed away in 1972.
“He would have loved the technology now,” said Tryles.
In addition to two cork guns, Dadson asked for a Meccano set, which was a model construction set, a toy car for his brother and slippers for his parents. And he signed his letter with plenty of Xs and Os for Santa.
“I thought it was interesting,” she said. “He was really smart.”