Emily Greene Balch to Yella Fuchs Hertzka, December 22, 1920


December 22, 1920.

Dear Frau Hertzka,

I wrote this letter some days ago but before it could be mailed I received a letter from Mrs. Pethick Lawrence urging us to arrange our Congress also at Salzburg and saying that she had written to you to the same effect. I therefore held back my letter hoping to hear from you your opinion of Mrs. Pethick Lawrence's proposal. And though your letter of Dec. 10 has since arrived it makes no reference to Mrs. Pethick Lawrence and was I supposed written before hearing from her.

I cannot tell you how I hate the idea of having plans not arranged in a way that you like and approve. The burden falls on you and you know the local conditions. It is your idea and on your invitation that we come to Austria.

Yet from so many sides anxiety is exposed to me about meeting in Vienna. Some of our friends are disturbed by reports in the papers about the "house famine" in Vienna where it is reported that "even hotels are choked". They have no way of verifying these reports and of course realize that you will have looked into that aspect of the situation. Miss Courtney also wrote that it is almost impossible to get rooms in Vienna in hotels or elsewhere. Others fear Vienna will not be a [favorable] place on account of heat (Rosika Schwimmer particularly urged this point) or of sickness.

If you should decide that the best decision under all the difficulties is to hold the Congress in Salzburg say July 20 to 27 that would seem to me the best situation ↑solution↓. But that is not what the Committee voted.

"Congress 1921. All agreed that it was impossible to make any definite choice in advance in these times. A provisional recommendation was made on the invitation of Frau Hertzka that the next congress should be held in Vienna. -- July 1921 was recommended as the best time. As to duration: the 'inside of a week.'"

It is not what you offered us, it involves the sacrifice of [page 2] much on which you have set your heart.

Yet my best judgment [illegible] at this distance is that this is the solution which will best advance our cause.

And it seems to me that if this plan is decided on it might be possible to get selected speakers to come earlier and address Vienna meetings and meetings elsewhere. I especially wish you might get Jane Addams to do this and it seems to me not at all impossible that you might.

Or you might arrange a tour to come after the Summer School. I hope Jane Addams will come to Geneva for the meeting of the Assembly, Sept. 1. I have no reason for supposing that she will do so, I have only just written to her proposing it.

Please let me know just as soon as you can what you think of this proposal of mine?

Dear Frau Hertzka I send you such loving Christmas wishes. I hope that admission to the League of Nations may prove a good present on Austria's Christmas tree and that it may be rich in blessing for her. I do not know how you feel about the League. I enclose a statement I have sent to Miss Addams which pretty well expresses my personal view and which is aimed as you see at economic cooperation from America.

Miss Cheever joins in sending her love,

Yours very affectionately,