Emily Greene Balch to Wilbur Kelsey Thomas, April 2, 1920



Geneva, April 2nd, 1920.

Dear Mr. Thomas,

M. Cérésole came in yesterday and to my intense mortification I learned that our Berne representatives refuse to visa his passport for the U.S.

It is intolerable!

Here is the son of a former president of Switzerland, a man of the very highest character refused like a criminal the right to enter the United States.

I dare say that you know that believing the Swiss inheritance lore to be unjust he gave up his inheritance to the State. Then during the war, taking the Quaker position as to war, he refused to pay the special military tax and underwent a technical imprisonment of, I believe, a day or two.

He wants to come to the U.S. as you know not to undertake any agitation against military service but to confer as to the possibility of constructive work more or less along the lines of that of the Friends Units.

He is now on his way to London and will try whether the representatives of the U.S.A. there will be more reasonable than the understrappers in [Berne]. Do see what can be done to bring this about. You probably are doing so already. I send with this a [pamphlet] of M. Cérésole’s giving all the documents in the tax refusal case.

Yours always most cordially,