Margaret Dreier Robins to Jane Addams, February 18, 1907


February 18, 1907.


Dear, dear Miss Addams,

Yesterday was the first day since my illness that I felt equal to reading anything worthwhile, it was with a sense of keen enjoyment that I turned to your "Newer Ideals of Peace."

I was uninterrupted for the greater part of the day & thus had your dear companionship for many hours. I am so very glad that you managed to find time for writing; I thank you from my heart for this book. 

You show so clearly & convincingly that the dynamic force of love necessitates transmitting character to meet the ever-increasing demands of social righteousness & I thank you deeply for telling us where we may find its highest expression. Nowhere have I met a stronger plea than you make for the "least of these His children!" God bless you for it! All the while I was reading these words were echoing through my brain: The bruised reed He shall not break & The smoking flax He shall [page 2] not quench; & this was only made possible by the beautiful spirit of the writer.

I was very much interested in what you said regarding the Anthracite strike & what might have happened if no violence had been perpetuated by the miners. You rather intimate that public sympathy would then have sustained them in their just demands for living conditions. And yet when the Fall River strike took place & the strikers shared their miner benefit with the non-miner men & women & no act of violence was perpetuated by the strikers during those six or eight months public sympathy did not come to the aid of the striken Fall River people. We also had several strikers in New York (notably the lock out for the cloth hat & cap makers) where in spite of no violence on the part of the strikers, public sympathy was absolutely against them. In each of these latter cases only about 10,000 workers were involved but in the case of Fall River it involved 22,000.

I only refer to these facts in order to enforce a plea I want to make with you & it is this: I feel strongly that the honorable & conservative men & women of our country must be roused to a sense of the injustice of present day conditions & must be made to realize that [page 3] through a subsidized press they are kept in ignorance of facts which are essential to a correct understanding of present day history, which means that this ignorance (the ignorance of good people) is being played upon & utilized for ignoble purposes.

Dear, dear Miss Addams I mention this because in all America I know of only one person who can reach the honorable conservatives of this country & raise for them a rallying-cry, and that is you!

I am still rather shaky in writing, but I hope you can read this veritable epistle & at least know that it carries a whole heart full of love.

Gratefully & affectionately
Margaret Dreier Robins

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