The United States vs Santa Claus

During Judge Isaac Parker's tenure at Fort Smith, approximately 12,000 cases passed through the court. Many of these cases were for minor offenses, and many were never heard in front of a jury trial. The Parker court might be best known for its murder and rape cases, but most of the really interesting characters were involved in lesser crimes like larceny, moon shining and introducing whiskey into Indian Territory.

In December 1882 a man by the name of Santa Claus, residing in Eureka Springs, Arkansas, was accused of illegally selling two gallons of whiskey in the Cherokee Nation. The alleged crime had occurred in August of 1881.

It appears that Santa Claus was either never apprehended, or his case never went to trial.

Last updated: April 10, 2015

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