Alice Thacher Post to Jane Addams, December 17, 1918


↑Carbon for E. G. B. from A. T. P.↓

2513 Twelfth Street, Washington.
December 17, 1918.

Dear Miss Addams:

I enclose Mrs. Terrell's letter of acceptance. I had a little talk with her last evening. She is very much pleased at going, and she reports that the people she is working with are very much pleased also. I am sending her the communications you enclosed for her, also other material from her own party and various clippings as she has not been following the subjects we have been interested in as closely as if she had been identified with the W.P.P. from the beginning. Nevertheless I believe her to be in full sympathy with our principles. I do not believe that it will be necessary to arrange for any aid for her expenses. She asked about expenses on an earlier occasion, and has not spoken as if it would be difficult to meet them. Her husband is a judge of the Municipal Court here, and she lectures a great deal and must receive pay for some of her lecturing. I told her last night that I might be called on to go over in advance of the large group of Delegates, but that if I did not go over ↑until↓ she and the other Delegates should go, I would be happy to share a stateroom with her.

I should think Miss Nichols would be a very good person to go over as a Delegate.

If the Congress should not meet until May what would you think of Miss Rankin as a Delegate? She will be out of Congress then. Would not it be a card to play, to have our only woman Congressman? She came up while I was talking to Mrs. Terrell last evening at the Women's Trade Union League, and knowing that she was a peace woman and very fond of you, I went on with my talk, explaining it to Miss Rankin as I went on with it. She was very much interested and very sympathetic, and sent a friendly message to you.

Your letter of the 13th came yesterday, with Mrs. Andrews' letter in it; so nothing was lost out of that other letter after all. I am very sorry that Mrs. Andrews cannot work with our group just now, but perhaps she can join the Congress if it is held in May.

I called up to see about Dr. Shaw. She left for Florida last Sunday. I heard her say a week ago that for several years she had had to spend her winters in Florida. At the National Headquarters they said that her address is "Florence Villa, Florida." That does not seem like a full address, but they said it was all right.

The rest of this letter is rather confidential to "The Five." I will send carbons to Mrs. Mead and Miss Balch.

I had a very satisfactory interview with Judge Siddons (Mr. Justice Frederick L. Siddons, of the Supreme Court of the District) this morning. He is one of the Directors of the American Peace Society, as you know.

As you know, the Board has sent over Mr. Call among the newspaper men on the Orizaba. He has headquarters in Paris with the other newspaper men and is in the middle of things. At the same meeting of the Board at which that was arranged they decided to send three other representatives, Mr. Theodore Burton, former President; Mr. James L. Slayden, present President; and Mr. Jackson ↑H.↓ Ralston, partly paying their expenses. Mr. Burton tho't he could go after the holidays. Mr. Slayden is in doubt as to the advisability of his going on account of his being persona non grata with the Administration. Mr. Ralston may go, I understand. Apparently the [Board] had no idea of substituting any one else if [page 2] any of these failed to go. I mention this to answer possible suggestions on the part of Mrs. Mead and Miss Balch. They have taken great pains about this and saved up money for the purpose because they think this a very important time to make influence felt.

They understand that many members of the [Inter-parliamentary] Union from several countries will be there. (Incidentally, Mr. Slayden is the American head of that, I understand.) There is [an] effort being made in some of the foreign groups to have, if not an organized meeting of the Union itself, at least a meeting of its Council, at the time of the Peace Conference, in Paris presumably.

They also understand that there are likely to be groups of representative Labor men there. And they have thought it desirable that as many groups as possible from the various peace organizations, in a general way under the leadership of the A.P.S., should be there. At all events, this has been Judge Siddons' aspiration all along. And he has been anxious from the beginning that there should be organized, representative women among them. This is proved by the fact that he called me up himself, as I have written you, to ask what we were going to do, and urge us to do it.

Of course they know no more than any one what the course of events will be over there. But Mr. Siddons says that they have told Mr. Call to be on the look out for as much association between the [Inter-parliamentary] Union people and the Labor people and the Peace people as will be useful, even to the extent of getting them into a loose conference for temporary expression of public opinion on the fundamentals which they hold in common. He feels that women are immensely needed in this kind of unification of public opinion.

I told him of your reference to Dr. Jacobs of the three questions in regard to time and place of the Congress, and also of your desire that five women representative of our group and perhaps a few leading American women who were not among our International members, should be in Paris as soon as possible, whether the Congress was held there and then, or not. I told him that I was in sympathy with this, and that if it turned out that the Congress should not be held until May, and that the women, or some of them who should go over now, could not stay until May, they could come back, and then go over again if they could take the time and money; and if not, they would probably, as I saw it, be doing more important work in going at the earlier, rather than the later time. He said he "decidedly agreed" with me.

Now as to passports. Judge Siddons was surprised that any one should think there was any doubt of your getting a passport. He said they had got one for Mr. Call without the least trouble. He said that he would help you in the matter with the greatest pleasure; that he knew many of the people over there in the Departments; that other officers of the A.P.S. would be able to help, like Mr. Jackson H. [Ralston], and Mr. Allan Farquhar, and Mr. Arthur [Ramsey]. Of course he may be over-confident, but I myself believe you would get it.

If I get the telegram from you that I am wanted among the "Five", I will, as you have directed, immediately begin on getting my own passport. I shall be glad to hear from any one else as to how they are getting on. Any information I get as to probable time it is likely to take, I will pass on to others.

We are expecting Dr. and Mrs. Graves of Chicago tomorrow for a few days' visit. After that you would be most welcome here if you would like to try for your passport then. And if you want to come earlier Mrs. Kent, as I think also has written you, will probably be already for you. We would both love to have you if we could.

In closing I will repeat what I said earlier, that this letter contains information which ought to be regarded as confidential, as can readily be understood; but it seemed best to give you as much inside information as possible, and Judge Siddons felt that way himself.

Always lovingly yours, A T P [initialed]