Chicago, Feb. 9, 1912.
My dear Miss Addams: --
We are all such busy people, on Chicago Commons' Board of Trustees, that we can seldom get attendance and attention enough satisfactorily to consider either the encouraging results achieved, or plans for maintenance and development. Two meetings a year are all we need for the formal transaction of the necessary business. If we can only plan for an annual meeting in January, and one other meeting in May, every trustee can keep personally in touch with the work through my letters accompanying the monthly financial statements, and, I sincerely hope, by at least one visit to the house a year.
With the statement of receipts and expenditures for January, I send you a classification of the contributions for 1911, which will surely interest you, and may surprise you by the country-wide area and the many different places from which Chicago Commons derives its support. This, of course, is made possible only through such representation as is made by correspondence, supplemented by our very occasional printed matter, and by attention which is called to the work by incidental references to it in my public addresses.
Since so many trustees were necessarily absent from the annual meeting this week, and it afforded no opportunity to report even the most interesting features of the year's work, I beg leave to enclose my docket, in the hope that you will find in its items the briefest possible statement of the progress of the year. Please note the model flat for training in housekeeping, the study of moral standards of adolescent girls, and the adoption of our citizenship class work by the Board of Education.
The needs of the work which are most pressing, are for gymnasium, shower baths and club rooms to meet the growing demands of the neediest boys and men of many nationalities, who urge us to let them in. A plain three story building in place of the dangerously inflammable frame cottages, would finely complete our building equipment. It would not only provide for men and boys, but would leave more adequate space in the main building for the girls' clubs and gymnasium classes, the day nursery, and would provide space also for a much needed laundry.
If we could watch our opportunity to interest some one to provide grounds and buildings for our camp and outing work at any future time, it would enable us to increase the efficiency of our effective summer work not only, but if the location was not too distant, would afford shelter for some of our many over-borne people, who need a few days' rest and change to recover from sickness, or to regain working strength when worn out. Such a place would be a [page 2] god-send to tired mothers and save families from going to wreck.
The election of Mr. Rudolph Matz to take the place from which we so sorely miss his good mother, fills the only vacancy in our board of trustees.