Lucy Biddle Lewis to Jane Addams, December 19, 1915

Landsdowne, Pa.

Dear Miss Addams.

I think of you many times and wish we were near enough for me to drop in and know how you are. I appreciated very greatly a letter from Dr. Hamilton and am hoping sincerely by this time you are going about and soon can forget your illness only do take care of yourself [page 2] you are too valuable to waste your energies. What a busy busy world it is for those who are capable & willing. I wish energy could be better directed in many cases. We are appalled at the work some of our Phila. women are doing in the ways of "being patriotic," in other words preparing for immediate war [securing] hours for hospitals -- automobiles for carrying wounded -- classes for first aid -- and a [page 3] lot of other tom foolery -- that would be only ridiculous if not serious on part of society leaders who carry influence in many quarters.

Our Penna Branch Woman's Peace Party is rousing a bit now, and we begin to work; we are arranging a forum for January and other things & I hope can accomplish something. Also forces are at work separately and I believe the preparedness people have gone to such extremes there is a limit to endurance & the [page 4] reaction is beginning. We are opening a "Peace Shop" tomorrow in a conspicuous location in Phila. with calendars, Xmas & New Years cards -- blotters, books, booklets, postals -- [etc.] bearing on peace for sale -- & literature to distribute. Our appeal for helpers has been well responded to, & much interest shown in many quarters; now if we can attract purchasers & get literature out in any quantity we may do some good.

We will run it two weeks or longer. It is hard to have much enthusiasm [page 5] over Christmas with the terrible suffering abroad, and our country getting rich over the sale of ammunition, but we will have a little simple family [amusements]. My son & his wife & twins come to us, & we have a tree & some [illegible] for the babies who are nearly two & a half & ready to enjoy such things. My daughter has been very busy over her work at the Training School for Social Work [page 6] and decided to accept an invitation to South Carolina for the holidays, so left last evening. We have never spent Christmas apart before since she came to us, so I shall miss her sadly.

I had an interesting letter from Mrs. Thomas in London lately. It is her daughter Dr. Henrietta who wanted so to join us at The Hague in April -- & who has been to [page 7] Germany so many times taking over women & children & bringing others to England. Mrs. Thomas said on her last trip she <Dr. Henrietta> was frequently asked about the possibility of a Conference of Neutral Nations & the pacifists many of them expressed the feeling that was the only hope for peace. I sent the letter at once to President Wilson with a short one of explanation. Mr. Tumulty sent an answer "that it would be brought to his attention", the same polite rejoinder & I suppose the end of it. [page 8]

I hope this scrawly gossipy letter won't tire you; it is just the result of much thinking of you & a desire to show my love & when I started I just ran on. I truly really hope by Christmas you may be equal to enjoying & having a quiet restful Holiday time. The Peace Party in Washington will be very tame if you should not be there.

Always affectionately your true friend Lucy Biddle Lewis.