Jane Addams to David Starr Jordan, December 28, 1915


December 28, 1915

My dear Dr. Jordan: --

I was in the hospital at the time of the last meeting of the Board of the Chicago Peace Society, but I will get in touch with them very soon.

I should very much like to have Dr. Mez in Chicago, serving as secretary of the Peace Society and shall do my best to urge it.

I wish very much that I might have had an opportunity to see you and discuss with you the matter of the Ford expedition. I am enclosing a copy of a cable received this morning from Dr. Jenkin Lloyd Jones.

The character of the expedition changed very rapidly even after I left New York on Thanksgiving Day. We were all delighted when Mme. Schwimmer succeeded in interesting Mr. Ford in the Conference of Neutrals, but the notion of a separate ship was of course not part of the original plan. I did not know of it until after the boat had been chartered, and after that, Mr. Ford's interest seemed [page 2] to [center] so much around the ship that the original conference was more or less lost. The plan continued to change and almost no one on our carefully selected list actually sailed on the Oscar II.

In spite of all of this, however, I still feel that there is an element of popular appeal in it which may be of very great value, and that out of it we can perhaps pull off a Conference of Neutrals.

We had hoped that Mr. Ford's money would take care of the publishing of the various [programs] as they might be sent in, translating from one language to another and a sort of international opinion [reestablished]. Perhaps you will permit me to insert part of a letter I wrote to Colonel House.

My doctors will not permit me to sail for at least four or five weeks. Would you consider being part of the leadership in this Conference if the thing can finally be gotten into shape? I have a great deal of confidence in Mr. Lochner, and after a great [page 3] deal of experience with Mme. Schwimmer I have always found her absolutely neutral and always against war as an institution. Our Woman's International Committee could not, of course, officially join, and I have been most anxious that it should not become confused with the Ford undertaking.

Always faithfully yours,

Jane Addams. [signed]

Dr. David Starr Jordan
Berkeley, California.