Edward William Bok to Jane Addams, September 4, 1912


September 4-1912

My dear Miss Addams:

I have read the articles, and while, of course, they are newspapery in style, the arguments are very much what I had in mind for our articles. I see no reasons why if you elaborate these articles by stories [etc.], and omit any Progressive Party references, much the same material, worked over, could be used. Suppose I make my idea a little charge to you, perhaps, by enclosing brief outlines of the first six articles. Perhaps that will give you the idea better. The first article would, of course, confirm much of what is in the McClure article I take it, although naturally our article would have to be written as in the past tense. It occurs [now] to me that the Vermont returns are a pretty good indication of what we may [page 2] expect in November with perhaps even a better showing with local issues removed. Still the first Progressive campaign will, to my mind, have done much to attract the attention of the people to the questions involved. Then would come four years of Education work & a larger result and perhaps victory then. I was immensely pleased as the Vermont showing, were you not, for a party a month old? Still, the party is nominally only a month old: in the minds of the people it is much older!

As to the articles I have in mind, suppose we take up these six first. Then, we can see. But I am beyond it, the questions of national health, the social evil, the [immigrant], [etc.]. Besides, I think the public will show the way to you, if the articles [page 3] are a means, by the questions they will put, to you.

It is simply necessary that the articles will contain these two essentials:

First: The explanatory note

Second: The remedial note

Then we will appeal to two classes: those to whom the questions are for the most part new, & also those to whom the questions are more or less familiar but who are hazy on the on the way out.

Don't think I am avoiding purposely the equal suffrage question. I tell you did this for us, and then, too, you can hold forth on that questions to your heart's content in the first article. (It is the only "plank" in the Progressive platform that I can't "see". Dense, am I not?) You must feel perfectly free to express your views in these articles whether they complicit with those of the magazines or not: they are your views: not ours. [page 4]

I also enclose a "note" with which I have in mind to introduce the page for your inspiration and approval. May I have this back?

Can you now say you feel you can do this work for us, so that I can leave a space in my January issue? You may find it convenient while at Bar Harbor this month to unite two or three of the articles before your speaking engagements begin. Would not that help <you> us? It would materially aid us.

I have here next Tuesday for Philadelphia, so if I might have an answer from you this week I should value it.

May I thank Mrs Bowen for her kind willingness to have me come to her house to see you? I hardly think it will be necessary for me to take your time unless you wish to talk the matter over in any phase not clear to you, and then I will [come] over (or sail over) to be more exact) with pleasure.

It will really [quite] fill me with joy to have this page by you, & I hope you will see the opportunity and the time.

Sincerely yours,

Edward Bok [signed]