Emily Greene Balch to Jane Addams, December 5, 1920

In my room
Sunday Evening
December fifth

Dear Miss Addams,

Since I wrote you about the Nobel Prize matter the other day I have received a letter from Mrs. Cothren expressing complete discouragement or apathy on the subject. I hear she has resigned so this may not be important. I shall know better when [page 2] I hear from Miss Kittredge.

Of course I am bound to do all that can be done to realize the wish of the Executive Committee until I am otherwise instructed. Meanwhile no one can do anything until our American friends act. The candidacy must be proposed by some one in the U.S. -- or at least that is the customary procedure. [page 3]

It seems to me that if the matter is not to going through it might be dropped and our members informed how things stand -- (The matter has never been made public. I have carefully not given out news of the proposal except to our officers [etc.])

It further seems to me that the most natural and decisive way to end the matter or postpone the plan -- if the American opinion is thatthismust be done -- would be for you yourself to ask the Ex. Com. to drop it or postpone it.

This is very badly put and this whole letter seems peculiarly stupidly written but you ↑will↓ understand whether I write express myself apparently ungraciously, or inappropriately or not. You will [know] much best how Am situation had better be handled. [page 4]

I just want to have an application made promptly and effectively if it is to be made, and the plan to dealt with in a regular and proper way if it is not going to be carried through, not just allowed to linger and fail.

The three Scandinavian woman at the assembly -- Mrs. Wicksell, Miss Forchhammer, and Dr. Bonnevie -- are so fine. It would do you good to [page 5] see them -- so [modest], competent, hard working, high minded and so nice looking. I had them photographed today in our garden and if the picture is any good will send you a copy.

I will write you soon about what we are asking for and doing ↑in connection with the assembly↓ -- a proper letter from the office with a copy for the files. This is a highly unofficial letter just to you about [page 6] this Nobel Prize matter which troubles me a good deal.

Miss Cheever joins in sending her love and all good wishes for the Christmas & New Year's season.

Yours always loving

Emily G Balch.

As I reread this I see that it gives no idea of how much I want to see the application made and carried to a successful conclusion. Wouldn't it be just too nice.

Making an application one year unsuccessfully does not interfere with making it again another time.