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Addams, Jane et al.

ARCHIVE: Emergency Peace Federation / American Conference for Democracy and Terms of Peace archive.


Women's Peace Party correspondence
With letters to Jane Addams and Lillian Wald
collected by Addams' secretary
[Addams, Jane, Lillian Wald, Emily Balch, et al]. Archive of Material Relating to the Emergency Peace Federation, and the American Conference for Democracy and Terms of Peace. Chicago and elsewhere; ca. 1914 - 1917.
Autograph manuscript, original and carbon typescript, printed material, carbons, telegrams and incidental correspondence relating to various women's and peace movements in the early 20th century; ca. 225 items; various sizes. An informative and significant collection preserved by future Pulitzer Prize winner Louis P. Lochner - who acted as Jane Addams' secretary - during his activities as a member and officer of women's organizations and peace organizations.
Arranged in three worn clasp binders, each with a label affixed to the upper cover: "National Peace Federation/September to December 1915," Part II/American Conference for Democracy and Terms of Peace," and "Documents/October 1914 - March 1915 (Chicago)." The binders contain some smaller items mounted to rather friable paper, with marginal chipping to mounts; many retained carbons on cheap pulp paper, with tanning and occasional brittleness, but generally good to very good, consistent with materials. The binder labeled "National Peace Federation" includes a 4pp. typescript and autograph index of the letters, listing 58 items; "Part II" includes a 7pp. index, which is bound-in on the eighth page of the binder, and contains 97 items; and "Documents" contains a 5pp. index listing 84 items.
Many of these letters are to and from Lochner and relate to the Women's Peace Party. There are also three letters (two TLS and a telegram) from Addams to Lochner regarding another unnamed peace organization; two letters from Crystal Eastman to Lochner (one TLS and one telegram); one TLS from Emily Balch; one 8pp. draft of a letter - never sent - from Lochner to Wald regarding his connection with "the proposed Conference on Democracy and Terms of Peace"; and a copy of a letter from Chrystal Macmillan to Mme. Rosika Schwimmer containing a recapitulation of meetings she attended.
Much of the correspondence concerns organizational matters, as well as efforts toward promoting the peace agenda, and the correspondents reflect a broad range of private and public entities, including other peace organizations, political figures, theologians, activists and educators, among them Roger Baldwin, Upton Sinclair (one ALS), Emily G. Balch, Carl D. Thompson, Mrs. R. LaFollette, Ethelwyn Mills, and Scott Nearing.
Founded in 1915, the WPP was the first autonomous national women's political organization in the United States, and its goal was to protest for peace. Women involved in the WPP were expected to emphasize how their duties in the home aligned with their political rights. Jane Addams was the chairwoman, and some prominent officers within the group were Lillian Wald, Carrie Chapman Catt and Crystal Eastman (who are all represented in this collection). Addams was later named the president of the international counterpart of the WPP, the International Committee of Women for Permanent Peace.
An autograph memo written by A.W. Kliefoth recounts the establishment of the international organization, and outlines the relationship between Addams and Lochner:
During the summer of 1915, when Miss Jane Addams, Miss Sophonisba Breckinridge of Chicago University, and Mr. Lochner, acting as special secretary to Miss Addams, went to the Hague, they organized with the Assistance of different European delegates, (including Madam Schwimmer) the International Committee of Women for Permanent Peace. (n.d.; item 2 in the National Peace Federation binder)
Kliefoth goes on to say that after the Hague, the group traveled to German to lecture on the subject of peace there.
Lochner was involved in many peace organizations, and it seems he solicited Addams to join one that he was trying to form. She writes that while she was interested in his plan,
I am however very unwilling to have my name used with a group unless I am in constant communication with the plans and changes which must necessarily come in any emergency matter like this. I dislike to refuse anything you ask me to do, but I am sure you realize that when my permission to travel and to attend meetings is so restricted it is better for me to do what work I can nearer at hand. (May 7, 1917; in "Part II" binder)
Addams closes by telling Lochner to keep her informed on how his plans for this group develops.
Lochner's carbon reply is present, and he clarifies what he needed from Addams for his group,
After receiving your letter of May 7th, I immediately wired you full text of the Call for the Conference. We had felt that we wanted the Call to be signed by people all over the country, while the responsibility of the Conference would be in the hands of a smaller Committee. I therefore hope you may be able to reconsider your refusal to let your name appear in the call. (May 9, 1917; in "Part II" binder)
Alas, Addams was not moved by Lochner's second request. She sent a telegram saying, "Very sorry impossible for me to sign the call had an interesting talk with dr magnes today will write you fully later" (May 10, 1917; in "Part II" binder). In her next letter, Addams responds to Lochner regarding the efficacy of mass meetings and tells him she will let him know if she is available to speak at a meeting (see May 21, 1917 letter, in Part II binder).
Louis Lochner (1887 - 1975) served as Secretary to the Chicago Peace Party, in which role he worked with Jane Addams, traveling with her to the Women's Peace Congress at The Hague in 1915. The archive provides an intimate view of the nuts and bolts of peace activism and organizing during the period of the Great War, and includes correspondence by or relating to some of the most prominent representatives of the movement in the mid-West.

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