Charles Johnson Gedge to Jane Addams, October 30, 1911

29 Laurent St. Santa Cruz

Oct. 30, 1911.

Mrs. Jane Addams,

The work that you, my dear Madam, are engaged in makes your time so infinitely more valuable than mine, that I shrink from venturing to occupy even a few moments of it with any intrusion. But I do wish you would keep the word "cadet" out of your terrible accounts of the "white slave" traffic. I suppose our great grandfathers would have called such a man as you refer to "a pimp" -- at least, so far as I know your meaning [page 2] of "cadet", and the meaning of "pimp" in the plays & histories they were identical, and surely if you can find another word, it were better to shock the students of a shocking but necessary subject with the proper <word (verbum? profession)> than to prostitute a pure & honorable word to a <most> vile use. Many years ago I read in the columns of a St. Paul (Minn.) newspaper in one of it police reports of "girl clerking in Madame ____'s [illegible]," the word "clerk"-- originally meaning one chosen by lot to fill the place of an Apostle, as was Matthias, being here used for what we now call a "white slave"! Even the latter term seems to me too good for the evil thing, [seems?] though no one could be a keener abolitionist than I was [page 3] slavery has always seemed a decent, and even moral institution, compared with the "social evil" -- though, alas, it too often involved a condition of things scarcely less demoralizing, or disastrous, to its unfortunate victims.

You probably never read the touching chapters in the later volumes of Arthur Helps' "Friends in Council." I am thankful to have read them when I was half a century younger than I am now, and, recalling then, I earnestly wish you God speed in your noble work, admiring especially the simple and direct (always excepting the dreadful use of word referred to above) manner in which you handle it, not merely as a vice of society, but as a great human, and at the same devilish institution, as old as the world, and often, and indeed, still, in the East [forming] occupying an important place in its religious rites. 

But I must not trouble you more, and hope you will pardon a life-long love of the study <of words> who is perpetually [illegible] the manner in which they are being daily more and more misused, & especially in this country.

Yours most respectfully
Charles J. George

I do not expect you to answer this.

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