Lucy Biddle Lewis to Jane Addams, May 3, 1917


My Dear Miss Addams

It was good to hear from you once more, and it had occurred to me you might be interested to know of some of our activities, now I feel sure, & do not hesitate to write of them. I have been very occupied with my many lines of work & the illness of my grand children who all had their serious times this spring [page 2] and have monopolized more than my spare time & thought, however all are about well now, the baby boy just recovering from measles.

Our "School of Internationalism" held for one week was a great success, and had a fair attendance, all interested in the cause, anxious to learn. I will send you a program in case you have not seen it. The State Branch W.P.P. helped organize it, and is trying to be worth while [page 3] but it is uphill work & Mrs Hull gets discouraged. We have been able to hold our local Landsdowne Branch together admirably and meets monthly with a special topic presented on constructive lines such as "U.S. & the Mexican Situation," "U.S. & the Oriental Question" "Pan Americanism & Monroe Doctrine", "World Court." A committee takes each subject & sees to it that different persons study up on a sub topic, with the [page 4] result that every one gets a bit of education -- besides what comes out at the meeting -- & valuable material is presented there. I try to make it a point to have some up to date facts to present as their chairman & we send many telegrams [etc.] It is really a live body & keeps peace sentiment alive in constructive work & study. I have to put much time & thought into it but it is worth while.

The Friends too are active and we [page 5] are trying to educate for future as well as to meet present conditions. A committee of fifteen has been organized representing all American Friends, & we are opening Headquarters for Friends where literature will be on hand, a secretary & stenographer are to be employed, all questions be considered, suggestions received, inquiries answered or discussed -- & possibilities [page 6] of work be outlined as so far as feasible started & carried on. I will enclose draft of letter our National Committee is issuing. I have just been going over it this morning to add my criticisms & suggestions. It is most difficult to satisfy the desire to be doing -- with constructive suggestions that we can heartily approve, but we are trying to be [as] big as possible & yet not compromise [page 7] our traditional stand; we ought to lead we well know & we are not equal to our task, but there are earnest thinkers ready for any work or sacrifice.

The Federal Council of Churches does not seem to be doing much, at least we do not hear from it. There really seems little to do, except educationally and people are hard to reach, even those who want our help. [page 8]

I wonder when our trip abroad will come off now! I am still hopeful that this awful cataclysm will not long continue.

Our Quaker "Message" which cost many thousands of dollars to publish has brought most wonderful responses from all over the country. Our publications have been many, I will have some mailed to you in case you have not seen them. The English Friends as you probably know have asked us to meet in [page 9] an after the War Peace Conference of All Friends, & we are planning for that with commissions studying different phases. A Conference is to be held on the 18th & 19th of May to hear reports, & plan for continuation & extension of the work. It will be a valuable time I hope -- with constructive ideas. If reports are published as we hope I will send you one, as considerable detail work is being [page 10] done.

Lydia is so happy in her work & I get very glowing letters. I shall be happy when some vacation time arrives & we can be together again.

I must close now & hope I have not tired you with all this.

Do you ever hear of any of the European workers in [I.C.W.P.P.] or is the censorship too strict?

I often wish I knew of [page 11] them & the Holland situation. Is Dr. Jacobs more kindly in her sentiment toward you. I trust so. The situation in Holland must be difficult & sad. It is fortunate I did not get there.

Much of love from your friend

Lucy Biddle Lewis,

Lansdowne, Pa.