January 6, 1916.
My dear Miss Addams:
Your kind letter of December 28th has just reached me, having been misdirected to Berkeley. I am sending with this a copy of a letter to Mr. Ford which explains my position. I believe that the cruise of the Oscar II will do good in showing that idealism is not yet dead, and perhaps in breaking a bit the ice of officialism.
But the work of mediation should have been separated from it. It needs the very best minds that can be had, and the right group could hardly be selected by or from the shipload of amateurs and students. Among the men, Mr. Lochner is perhaps the only one who has made any special study of European affairs. Jenkin Lloyd Jones and John D. Barry are among the salt of the earth, but their international experience is not broad.
Your selection of Colonel House (if I read your letter [aright]) would have been excellent. The [page 2] President's choice of his Commission (House, Mezes, Malone, Grayson) seems to me very wise. Whatever they are sent over for, they are sure to do good. The difficulties surrounding any kind of mediation seem to be growing, in the neutral as well as in the belligerent states. But there must be an end sometime.
I have great faith in Dr. Mez. I have seen him under varied trials, both in Europe and in America all the way from Scotland to Salonica. I have never known him to weaken in his principles or to cheapen them by personal [controversy].
I shall be interested to know your answer to Mr. Jones and Colonel House's answer to you.
Very sincerely yours,
David Starr Jordan [signed]