Helena Stuart Dudley to Jane Addams, August 7, 1918


Shelburne, N.H. August 7, 1918

Dearest Lady:

It did me good to see you home and to read the article you sent me -- thank you for remembering me when you have so many people & things to remember! I like the article so much and am sending the extra ones to people who will profit.

I am glad to think of you out in my dear Colorado where the air is so wonderfully life-giving! [page 2] I have never been in Estes Park but have spent many summers in South Park, at Twin Lakes and in other high places ↑in Colo.↓ I do hope you are feeling well and much stronger.

I am visiting Miss Scudder. The position of the pro-war radical Christian is perhaps more perplexing to me than any other! We talk with mutual tolerance and some "rapprochement" but still I feel a great [disagrees?] of ↑in↓ fundamental theory. She seems [page 3] to me excessively optimistic in feeling that all kinds of democratic advances are being made by the war. Of course the program of the B. [Labour] Party is fine & forward looking -- but it is not yet [illegible] with executive and will meet the most determined opposition. I can but question the belief that war brings democracy more quickly than years of peace & propaganda! And if it does bring democratic advance, will it have the spirit of [page 4] good will & "love" that we feel essential to a really sound democracy? Democracy may be almost as tyrannical as autocracy apparently -- if the "people" are intolerant of minority expression. I feel more & more our debt to Tolstoy who defined the Christian position so clearly in modern times. I wonder if you have seen Mrs. Hobhouse's "I Appeal unto Caesar" -- probably you have -- with its fine introduction by G. Murray & his appreciation of Tolstoy as the "greatest literary genius of Europe" (or something of that kind). [page 5] [True?] the London Nation and Common Sense -- which give one the comfort of knowing that some able and sane men are working for reasonable negotiations -- Our own press is hopeless!

Our dear Mary O'Sullivan has just had a serious operation at the hospital and is about leaving it now. She is gaining well I hear. It means from four to six months of convalescence. I don't feel very sure she will have the care she [page 6] needs. I wish I could have her with me. Mortimer is doing well in the Merchant Marine & Roger is to take the exam to enter it also. Mary's mind is much relieved that they will not be drafted. The Board of Labor has given her leave of absence with salary and she can return to work when she is able to do so. She is to be at Pt. Shirley, Winthrop for the rest of the summer I believe -- [though] it [page 7] is very uncomfortable for an invalid.

We had a line from Emily Balch enjoying greatly the trip to the Canadian Rockies & up to Alaska. It is the best thing possible for her to get away from her critics for a time and get the healing of beauty.

Please give my love to Miss Smith and with much much to yourself.

Ever your devoted,

Helena S. Dudley. [page 8]

I hope much to see you at the F. o R. conf. Sept. 19 --!