Document 11: Emily Greene Balch to Jane Addams, 8 June 1915, (excerpt), Jane Addams Papers, Series I, Swarthmore College Peace Collection (Jane Addams Papers microfilm, reel 8, #1013).

Document 11: Emily Greene Balch to Jane Addams, 8 June 1915, (excerpt), Jane Addams Papers, Series I, Swarthmore College Peace Collection (Jane Addams Papers microfilm, reel 8, #1013).


       Slow communications often meant that those on the different legs of the peace tour received information about other delegates through local newspapers. Unreliable communication meant that the envoys were sometimes unaware of the other delegates' endeavors. For these reasons Balch requested in this letter that Jane Addams meet her in Amsterdam to discuss their respective reactions to the peace tour.

                    En route, Stockholm to Petrograd
                    Tuesday, June 8, 1915

Dear Miss Addams

       Our business has taken longer than the time we hoped would suffice but I think it has gone well as one could have expected if not better. It lies so, that it seems very important to rendezvous, in Amsterdam and compare notes and make further plans. I am afraid that this means that we shall be keeping you waiting a little.  We were due in Petrograd Thursday night late--June 10. Suppose we are there 4 days and stop over to see Finnish friends a day or two you can count for yourself when we may hope to reach Amsterdam. The overland journey Petrograd to Stockholm is five full days and nights and Stockholm to Amsterdam is 2 as there are no night trains. Madame Schwimmer left on Friday to be in Copenhagen for the Danish celebration on Saturday and then to Berlin and Budapest where she planned to be with her family a week and then rendezvous at Amsterdam. …

       Baroness Ellen Palmstiorna (Swedish) whom you perhaps remember from the Congress or former meetings now the 4th member for Russia and is proving a charming addition to an already enjoyable party. I can’t tell you the pleasure it has been to be so closely associated with these fine and so agreeable women. Travelling is supposed to show you people’s weaknesses-- well, they have been [illeg.] at every point. Madame Schwimmer is as considerate of other people in the smallest details as if she had nothing bigger in her mind. I have grown to both admire and love her. . . .

       We get no news, the newspaper accounts of the Berne reply is our latest or we hear nothing at all. . . .

       I have decided not to sail as I planned from Christiania but to return to Amsterdam. I can’t bear not to join in the conference and hear your experiences and perhaps I can return at the same time you do if things fall out so, but it looks as though the step has been taken and that only, and is though as the German parent says " If you say one, you must go on and say two." I know how hard it will be to give your time to this, but-

       It is inconvenient to have a conflagaration start in a wooden village and our poor old earth is that village today and even a big pond is not wholly beyond the possible stride of the flames.

       I sent a long letter to Mr. Lochner by Mrs. Lloyd with some points that I thought may be useful at the White House if occasion served.

       I am keeping Miss Macmillan out of the use of her pen so I won’t add anything more to this portentous letter except my love to Miss Hamilton.

            Always affectionately yours
              Emily G. Balch

P.S. This postscript is to support Miss Balch’s request for you to remain on this side till we have had time to meet and interchange information and decide what it would be best to do next. Of course it must be most inconvenient for you and your own people must want you back badly for many things. This, however, is more important because it concerns the whole world so I urge you to wait to see whether there is not a next step that requires to be taken.

       Miss Balch had been suffering from loss of voice for some days and now is sick in bed. It was most disappointing that she could not meet and talk to all the charming Swedish women we met in Stockholm and that they could not get to know her. She is getting a little better every day and we hope she will be right by the time we get to Petrograd.

       Do wait here till we have met all and decided whether there is not something else to do on this side.

       Give my love to Dr. Jacobs and kind remembrances to the rest of your party. C.[hrystal] Macmillan


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