Eugene Cunningham Branson to Jane Addams, July 18, 1911


[July] 18th, 1911

Miss Jane Addams,
Hull House,
Chicago, Ill.

Dear Miss Addams;

I was sorry not to get to talk with you a little bit in early June when I was in Chicago. I know that you are busy, but I do not believe that you are too busy to consider sympathetically the problems of depleted population; the problems that we are contending with just as you are contending with the problems of congestion.

I am enclosing to you a report of our Faculty Extension Worker in the rural regions. It will give you a concrete illustration of the puzzle we are working at.

What we need is just such a man as John Frederick Oberlin, but we have not yet found him in Georgia. Just as insistently the situation calls for women with large vision, with philosophic insight, with steady patience and self-sacrifice, just such women as are grouped around you in the Hull House activities.

I kept wondering in Chicago whether you did not know some fine soul who could realize that the depletion and the destruction of rural life by our modern industrial urban civilization means at last great national calamity; and who might be willing perchance to be a voice crying in the wilderness and helping us to achieve in farm regions a satisfying, efficient rural civilization.

If you see things daily to make your heart bleed, so do I; but I know and so do you, probably, that farm life decay is largely the cause of your city problems. If you know such a worker, man or woman, do put me into communication with him or her.

I enclose a pamphlet that you may like to read in some leisure moment, if there be such a moment in your life. This letter is a cry from Macedonia to come over and help us.

We have a little group of devoted people working at this problem in Georgia; but we need a commanding personality with qualities of generalship and statesmanship.

It is a great pity that the rural life problem, as Mr. Arthur Kellogg says, has had only the most casual mention in the journals of the country and that only recently it has been presented to this general public at all.

Faithfully yours,

E. C. Branson [signed]

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