February 24th, 1910.
My dear Miss Addams, --
It was a distinct pleasure to get my first letter from you. You see I imply a hope that it will not be the last. You have been a comfort to me, though we have never met. You are one of the invaluable people who combine velocity and stability, so that the conservatives have to remain respectful toward you even while they are being dragged along.
I appreciate your invitation heartily. It is a satisfaction to know that you want me for so important an occasion. But I must decline. I'll tell you why, and I think you will forgive me.
I have been doing double work since the Fall. There were a great many demands for addresses, and I accepted a lot of them; in January alone I traveled 4500 miles and delivered 22 lectures besides carrying my Seminary work in full. Ever since the Fall it has been my plan to go to our little cottage in Canada as soon as our Seminary year is over, and begin work on a book. It is my only chance during the year for continuous literary work, and I have only eight weeks for it at the most. So I have declined all invitations (with one exception) during the Summer. To prepare for St. Louis and to go there would practically cut one week out of the eight, and you will understand why I prefer not to do that. The engagement in California is too early to connect with the [page 2] National Conference. I leave for California in the middle of April and return in the beginning of May.
My regret is mainly that I am not able to do what you ask me to do. As for the Conference I have no fear that that will suffer.
Walter Rauschenbusch [signed]