Aletta Henriëtte Jacobs to Jane Addams, December 4, 1915


AMSTERDAM, Dec. 4th 1915.

My dear Miss Addams,

I just received your letter, dated Nov. 8, in which you send me press cuttings about your [defense] against the attack of the bayonet-charges. [Today] at 12 o'clock the mail leaves for the U.S.A. so being quick I just have time to send you a few words, which I hope will reach you before you leave for Holland.

You must have received my letters and those of Rosa Manus, which we have sent you. So you know that Miss Hobhouse left the Office and Amsterdam the day after my arrival, because she <her private> financial reasons. The British Committee did not approve of her being in the Office and treated her in a way that she has withdrawn of <as> a member of the Brit. Comm. and asked to be an Intern. member belonging straightway to our Intern. Comm. There are more women in Gr. Britain who have asked that same privilege. We have answered that this question must first be settled at the meeting of the Intern. committee, which will now be held in [January] at the time you will be here.

There are a lot of difficult questions, which ought to be settled at that meeting.

About the money. There is here now in cash, with all what had come lately through you and others in the U.S.A. 5400 guilders, and we have to pay to the printer for printing and exporting-expenses of the reports 4400 guilders. That are the round sums. So there is not even left enough money to pay for [page 2] 3 months our Office expenses. We got a cable from Rosika Schwimmer that she got received from Mr. Henry Ford a sum of 200,000 dollars for our Intern. work, that she would send 20,000 dollars to our Office and that about the other 9/10 part we have to discuss the way of spending it. It all depends under which conditions that money is given, if we can honestly accept a penny of it. But in the meantime Miss Macmillan is spending daily a lot of money already, being sure that the Ford's money will come in. Your cable, we are waiting for, will perhaps clear up some of our difficulties.

What will mostly interest you is, that our Government will start the call for a committee of neutrals as soon as Mr. Battin returns from France. He was here this week and left for Paris. But I feel very much afraid and so does Battin and our Prime Minister, that the Ford's troupe will spoil all what can be done here just now.

That our Government takes measures to try to silence the Ford's invasion if they will arrive here, makes it also difficult for us to accept money from that source. In each case, if we accept it, we must keep it silent. I hope you will arrive here on your [page 3] own way and not to make yourself and our work suspicious by coming by the Ford's ship.

We have great difficulties with Miss Macmillan. She does the work in our office in such a way, that only because of me Rosa Manus remains in her place and the office-girls have to be calmed every evening by Rosa Manus and me, otherwise they are all running away. She has now cabled to England to send her an English secretary of 4 pounds a week and [traveling] expenses. But I will not bother you with these quarrels, that must all be settled later.

Who is accompanying you in coming here? How glad I am you will be here. It is the only way to settle a lot of difficulties.

Now, I must finish. Wishing you and all the dear friends in Hull House [page 4] a merry Xmas and happy new year, with many kisses for you,

Yours cordially

Aletta H. Jacobs.

Miss van Lanschot Hubrecht is still in the hospital and too ill to trouble her with any particulars about work. We have got her books and have now an experienced bookkeeper (lady) who comes in the evenings to make the whole books in order.