Lane, Alfred Church
Archive of Incoming Correspondence of Alfred Church Lane, Geologist Harvard graduate, professor at Michigan College of Mines and Tufts College, including letters from U.S. Congressmen and Senators, College Presidents and Professors, Business Leaders, Publishers, and Editors, 1877-1947

297 letters, 371 typed and handwritten pages, dated 1 May 1877 to 5 December 1947, also includes 16 paper and manuscript ephemeral items including 7 newspaper clippings, 1 manuscript poem, a 64-page tourist pamphlet for “Cohoes, New York,” 1 circular, 5 cards with manuscript notes and writing etc., 35 letters were written between 1877 - 1899, the rest date from 1900-1947.

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The correspondence in this collection consists mainly of incoming letters written to geologist Alfred Church Lane, a Harvard graduate, and professor at Michigan College of Mines and at Tufts College (the present Tufts University). The collection includes letters written by U.S. Congressmen and U.S. Senators, both in office and out, as well as college presidents, professors, business leaders, publishers, editors, friends, etc. While Lane was a geologist and professor, he took an active interest in politics, and many letters deal with the political issues of the day, including required military conscription, World War One, the League of Nations, local Michigan and Massachusetts elections, etc.

     Alfred Church Lane (1863-1948)

Alfred C. Lane was born in Boston, Massachusetts on 29 January 1863. He was a great-great-grandson of a Concord minuteman and grandson of an abolitionist. He belonged to the eleventh generation of his family in New England. His father, Jonathan Abbot Lane, served some years as president of the Boston Merchants’ Association and the Massachusetts State Senate. His mother was Sarah Delia Clarke, a graduate of Mt. Holyoke College. The Lanes were members of the Congregationalist church and the Republican party.

Lane was educated at the Boston Latin School and Harvard University, where he received his A.B. degree in 1883. Between 1883 and 1885 he taught mathematics at Harvard, then studied petrography under Prof. Harry Rosenbusch at the University of Heidelberg until 1887, before returning to Harvard to earn his Ph.D. in 1888. The following year he joined the Michigan State Geologic Survey as a petrographer, and he remained in that post into 1892, while also serving as an instructor at the Michigan College of Mines. He became assistant state geologist for Michigan in 1892, and from 1899 to 1909 he was the state geologist. Finally, he joined Tufts College in 1892, becoming the Pearson professor of geology and mineralogy. He retired from the college in 1936 as professor emeritus.

While at Tufts, Lane served as vice president of the AAAS Division of Geology in 1907. He received an honorary D.Sc. from Tufts in 1913. During World War One, Lane went to France to do educational work for the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA), and he stayed on through 1919 as head of the department of mining in the college organized by the American Expeditionary Force at the Université de Beaune. 

 From 1922 - 1946, Lane was chairman for the Committee on the Measurement of Geologic Time for the National Research Council. He served as a member of the Board of Visitors at Harvard Observatory in 1924. Lane was appointed as consultant of science to the Library of Congress in 1929; the first person to hold that post. In 1931, he was president of the Geological Society of America. He was awarded the Ballou Medal by Tufts College in 1940 for "distinguished service to education and the nation". During his career, he authored 1,087 publications. He published in the areas of science, religion, local and national politics, economics, word affairs, and other subjects, with many of his popular papers appearing in newspapers or periodicals, as well as scientific journals.

Lane married Susan Foster Lauriat on 15 April 1896. Together they had three children: Lauriat Lane, Frederic Chapin Lane, and Harriet Page Lane, who married C.D. Rouillard.

Alfred Church Lane died suddenly on 15 April 1948, of a heart attack, at the home office of the American Institute of Mining and Metallurgical Engineers, in New York City, where he had gone to greet friends who were returning with the Finn Ronne South Polar Expedition. He was 85.

      List of Correspondents:

George R. Agassiz (1862-1951) professor of zoology at Harvard University, son of American scientist and engineer Alexander Agassiz, and grandson of Louis Agassiz (1807-1873) noted biologist and geologist. He wrote 4 letters to A.C. Lane.

Rodolphe Louis Agassiz (1871-1933) was a ten-goal polo champion who participated in the 1902 International Polo Cup. He later became chairman of the board of the Calumet and Hecla Mining Company. He was the son of Alexander Agassiz, grandson of Louis Agassiz.

 Abram Piatt Andrew Jr. (1873-1936) was an economist, an Assistant Secretary of the Treasury, the founder and director of the American Ambulance Field Service during World War I, and a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Massachusetts.

James Burrill Angell (1829-1916) was an American educator, academic administrator, and diplomat. He is best known for being the longest-serving president of the University of Michigan, from 1871 to 1909. He wrote 2 letters to A.C. Lane.

Roger Ward Babson (1875-1967) was an American entrepreneur, economist and business theorist in the first half of the 20th century. He is best remembered for founding Babson College.

Julius Caesar Burrows (1837-1915) was a U.S. Representative and a U.S. Senator from the state of Michigan.

Hermon Carey Bumpus (1862-1943) was a biologist, museum director, and the fifth president of Tufts College (later Tufts University).

  Leonard Carmichael (1898-1973) was an American educator and psychologist. In addition, he became the seventh secretary of the Smithsonian Institution in 1953. He was appointed president of Tufts University in 1938, serving until his departure for the Smithsonian in 1953.

Louis Arthur Coolidge (1861-) Newspaper correspondent; private secretary to U.S. Sen. Henry Cabot Lodge, 1888-91; delegate to Massachusetts state constitutional convention, 1917; delegate to Republican National Convention from Massachusetts, 1920. 

Karl Taylor Compton (1887- 1954) was a prominent American physicist and president of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) from 1930 to 1948.

Ada Louise Comstock (1876-1973) was an American women's education pioneer. She served as the first dean of women at the University of Minnesota and later as the first full-time president of Radcliffe College.

George Bruce Cortelyou (1862-1940) was an American Cabinet secretary of the early twentieth century. He held various positions in the presidential administrations of Grover Cleveland, William McKinley, and Theodore Roosevelt.

John Albert Cousens (1874-1937) was an American Universalist businessman and educator who was the sixth president of Tufts College (later Tufts University) from 1919 to 1937. He wrote 4 letters to A.C. Lane.

Frederick William Dallinger (1871-1955) was a United States Representative from Massachusetts and a Judge of the United States Customs Court. He wrote 2 letters to A.C. Lane.

Edwin Denby (1870-1929) was an American lawyer and politician who served as Secretary of the Navy in the administrations of Warren G. Harding and Calvin Coolidge from 1921 to 1924. He also played a notable role in the infamous Teapot Dome scandal which took place during the Harding presidency.

Grover C. Dillman (1889-1979) He became President of Michigan Technological University in 1935 and in the next 21 years guided the development of its top-ranking engineering school, training ground for many hundreds of highway engineers.

William Yandell Elliott (1896–1979) was an American historian, hired by Harvard President Abbott Lawrence Lowell, and he was to remain at Harvard for the next 41 years, during which time he became an advisor to a American presidents and presidential candidates, including Al Smith in 1928. He was a member of Roosevelt's Brain Trust in the 1930s and '40s, and Vice President of the War Production Board in Charge of Civilian Requirements during World War II. He also accompanied Roosevelt to Yalta. and political advisor to six U.S. presidents.

Elizabeth Gardiner Evans (1856-1937) privately educated; married Glendower Evans. Served as trustee, Massachusetts State Reform Schools (1886–1914); was a member of the Massachusetts Consumers' League and the Women's Educational and Industrial Union of Boston (1890s); was a member and officer, Boston Women's Trade Union League (1904–12); was a member of the Massachusetts Minimum Wage Commission (1911–12); was active in the campaign for women's suffrage (1912–14); sent as a delegate to the International Congress of Women at the Hague (1915); was a national director, American Civil Liberties Union (1920–37); was on the Sacco-Vanzetti defense committee (1920–27); awarded the first annual Ford Hall Forum medal (1933). Publications: several articles in LaFollette's Weekly, The Progressive, and other periodicals.

 Joseph Warren Fordney (1853-1932) was a politician from Michigan, serving as a U.S. Congressman from the 8th District from 1899 to 1923.

Frederick Huntington Gillett (1851-1935) was an American politician who served in the Massachusetts state government and both houses of the U.S. Congress between 1879 -1931, including six years as Speaker of the House.

Carter Glass (1858-1946) was an American newspaper publisher and Democratic politician from Lynchburg, Virginia. He represented Virginia in both houses of Congress and served as the United States Secretary of the Treasury under President Woodrow Wilson. He played a major role in the establishment of the U.S. financial regulatory system, helping to establish the Federal Reserve System and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. use.

     Jeanette E. Granstein Women’s College, University of Delaware, Newark.

Arthur Norman Holcombe (1884-1977) was an American historian, and educator. He was credited with establishing political philosophy and theory as basic disciplines in Harvard University’s government curriculum, where he was Professor of Government, from 1910 to 1955. Among his students were John F. Kennedy, Henry Kissinger and Henry Cabot Lodge. In 1949, he assisted Chiang Kai-shek in drafting a constitution for the Republic of China.

Lucius Lee Hubbard (1849-1933) From 1891 to 1893, Hubbard served as assistant to M. E. Wadsworth with the State Geological Survey of Michigan based in Houghton, and then from 1893 to 1899 as Michigan state geologist. Hubbard was instrumental in the development the state mining industry, most notably in the area of Houghton. After leaving the geological survey, he then became general manager of the Copper Range Mining Co. and the Champion Copper Co., and afterwards was president of the Ojibway Mining Co. From 1905 to 1917 he was a member of the board of control of the Michigan College of Mines. He served as Regent of the University of Michigan from 1911 until his death.

  Julius Kahn (1861-1924) was a United States Congressman who was succeeded by his wife Florence Prag Kahn after his death. He has been described by the American Jerusalem as "among the most influential Jews in San Francisco—as well as national–civic life, from the middle of the 19th century into the 1930s".

Patrick Henry Kelley (1867-1925) was a politician from the U.S. state of Michigan. He served as U.S. Representative from Michigan's 6th congressional district from 1915-1923.

Prof. Alfred Church Lane (1863-1948) collection includes 6 retained ‘copies’ of letters by Lane, written to Hon. Henry Cabot Lodge, U.S. Senator. There is also 1 copy of a letter to Hon. Spencer Penrose.

Henry Cabot Lodge (1850-1924) was an American Republican Senator and historian from Massachusetts. A member of the prominent Lodge family. Collection includes a typed letter by Lodge, not signed, to Gov’r Arthur M. Hyde of Missouri.

Henry Cabot Lodge Jr. (1902-1985), sometimes referred to as Henry Cabot Lodge II,[1] was a Republican United States Senator from Massachusetts and a United States ambassador. He was the Republican nominee for Vice President in the 1960 presidential election alongside incumbent Vice President Richard Nixon.

Robert Luce (1862-1946) was a United States Representative from Massachusetts. He was elected a member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives in 1899 and 1901–1908. He was elected Lieutenant Governor in 1912. He was Regent of the Smithsonian Institution, and was an author, on the subject of political science. Luce was elected as a Republican to the Sixty-sixth and the seven succeeding Congresses (March 4, 1919 – January 3, 1935). He wrote 4 letters to A.C. Lane.

Donald Baxter MacMillan (1874-1970) was an American explorer, sailor, researcher and lecturer who made over 30 expeditions to the Arctic during his 46-year career. He pioneered the use of radios, airplanes, and electricity in the Arctic, brought back films and thousands of photographs of Arctic scenes, and put together a dictionary of the Inuktitut language.

       Daniel Lash Marsh (1880-1968) was president of Boston University from 1926 to 1951.

Joseph William Martin Jr. (1884-1968) was an American politician who served as the 44th Speaker of the United States House of Representatives from 1947 to 1949 and 1953 to 1955; he represented the district covering North Attleborough, Massachusetts. He was the only Republican to serve as Speaker in a sixty-four-year period from 1931 to 1995.

Edward B. Mathews (1869-1944) instructor of Mineralogy and Petrography at Johns Hopkins University and served the institution for almost fifty years. In 1895 he was promoted to the rank of associate, to associate professor in 1899, and he became professor in 1904. He succeeded W. B. Clark as chairman of the department in 1917. He retired in 1939 at the age of 70 with the title professor emeritus.

Fred Walter McNair (1862-1924) Asst. Prof. Math, Michigan Agricultural College, 1891-1893; Prof. Math and Physics, Michigan College of Mines, 1893-1924; and President, Michigan College of Mines, 1899-1924. During World War I worked with U.S. Bureau of Standards and later worked on firing methods for large Naval guns.

Ogden Livingston Mills (1884-1937) was an American lawyer, businessman and politician. He served as United States Secretary of the Treasury in President Herbert Hoover's cabinet, during which time Mills pushed for tax increases, spending cuts and other austerity measures that would deepen the economic crisis.

George Foot Moore (1851-1931) was an eminent Asian scholar, historian of religion, author, Presbyterian minister, 33rd Degree Mason of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, and accomplished teacher.

Arthur Ernest Morgan (1878-1975) was a civil engineer, U.S. administrator, and educator. He was the design engineer for the Miami Conservancy District flood control system and oversaw construction. He served as the president of Antioch College between 1920 and 1936. He was also the first chairman of Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) from 1933 until 1938 in which he used the concepts proven in his earlier work with the Miami Conservancy District.

William Allan Neilson (1869-1946) was a Scottish-American educator, writer and lexicographer, graduated in the University of Edinburgh in 1891 and became a Ph.D. in Harvard University in 1898. He was president of Smith College between 1917 and 1939.

Chase Salmon Osborn (1860-1949) was an American politician, newspaper reporter and publisher, and explorer. He served as the 27th Governor of Michigan from 1911 to 1913.

Richard Alexander Fullerton Penrose Jr. (1863-1931), better known throughout his career as R. A. F. Penrose Jr., was an American mining geologist and entrepreneur. He was from a prominent Philadelphia family; his brothers were U.S. senator Boies Penrose, mining engineer Spencer Penrose, and gynecologist Charles Bingham Penrose, and his grandfather was U.S. politician Charles B. Penrose. He wrote 2 letters to A.C. Lane.

Edward Lillie Pierce (1829-1897) was a United States author. He wrote a noted biography of Charles Sumner. He was a delegate to the Republican National Convention in 1860. At the beginning of the Civil War he enlisted as a private and served until July 1861, when he was detailed to collect the negroes at Hampton, Va. and set them to work on the entrenchments of that town. This was the beginning of the employment of negroes on U. S. military works. In December 1861, the United States Secretary of the Treasury dispatched Pierce to Port Royal, South Carolina to examine into the condition of the negroes on the Sea Islands. In March, he was given charge of the freedmen and plantations on those islands. He took with him nearly sixty teachers and superintendents, established schools, and suggested the formation of freedmen's aid societies.

Hazen Stuart Pingree (1840-1901) was a four-term Republican mayor of Detroit (1889–1897) and the 24th Governor of the U.S. State of Michigan (1897–1901). A Yankee who migrated from New England, he was a successful Republican businessman turned politician.

Robert Hallowell Richards (1844-1945) was an American mining engineer, metallurgist, and educator. In 1868, with the first class to leave the institution, he graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and there he taught for 46 years, becoming professor of mineralogy and assaying and later head of the department of mining engineering and professor of metallurgy. His wife, Ellen Henrietta Swallow Richards (1842-1911) was the first woman admitted to and graduated from MIT. She was an industrial and safety engineer, environmental chemist, and the first woman faculty member at MIT.

C. Burnside Seagrave – editor (from 1891 to 1935) of The Cambridge Chronicle is a weekly newspaper that serves Cambridge, Massachusetts. The newspaper was founded by Andrew Reid in May 1846 and is the oldest surviving weekly newspaper in the United States.

Ellen M. Stone (1846-1927) In September 1901, the Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization, seized and held for ransom Ellen M. Stone, a Congregationalist missionary. During the six months of her captivity, the Theodore Roosevelt administration, the American public, and her superiors on the American Board Commissioners for Foreign Missions struggled with the now-familiar issues connected with acts of international terrorism. The “Miss Stone Affair,” as the incident came to be called, provided America with one of its first lessons in the limitations of great power status. Ms. Stone wrote 2 letters to Mrs. A.C. Lane.

Henrietta Hill Swope (1902-1980) was an American astronomer who studied variable stars. In particular, she measured the period-luminosity relation for Cepheid stars, which are bright variable stars whose periods of variability relate directly to their intrinsic luminosities. Their measured periods can therefore be related to their distances and used to measure the size of the Milky Way and distances to other galaxies.

Allen Towner Treadway (1867-1947) was a Massachusetts Republican who served in the Massachusetts House of Representatives, as a member, and President of, the Massachusetts Senate and a member of the United States House of Representatives from March 4, 1913, until January 3, 1945.

Edwin Fuller Uhl (1841-1901) was a prominent Michigan lawyer and politician. He served as Mayor of Grand Rapids, Michigan, Ambassador to Germany and United States Assistant Secretary of State.

Charles Lee Underhill (1867-1946) was a United States Representative from Massachusetts. He served in the Massachusetts House of Representatives (1902-1903 and 1908-1913) and was a member of the State constitutional convention in 1917 and 1918. He was elected as a Republican to the Sixty-seventh and to the five succeeding Congresses (1921-1933).

Charles Richard Van Hise (1857-1918) was an American geologist, academic and progressive. He served as president of the University of Wisconsin (UW) in Madison, Wisconsin, from 1903 to 1918.

David I. Walsh (1872-1947) was a United States politician from Massachusetts. A member of the Democratic Party, he served as the 46th Governor of Massachusetts before serving several terms in the United States Senate. He wrote 3 letters to A.C. Lane.

Benjamin Sumner Welles (1892-1961) was an American government official and diplomat in the Foreign Service. He was a major foreign policy adviser to President Franklin D. Roosevelt and served as Under Secretary of State from 1936 to 1943, during FDR's presidency.

 John Wingate Weeks (1860-1926) was an American politician in the Republican Party. He served as the Mayor of Newton, Massachusetts from 1902 to 1903, a United States Representative for Massachusetts from 1905 to 1913, as a United States Senator from 1913 to 1919, and as Secretary of War from 1921 to 1925.Weeks wrote 4 letters to A.C. Lane.

Roger Wolcott (1847-1900) was a Republican lawyer and politician from Massachusetts. He was Lieutenant Governor of Massachusetts from 1893 to 1897, becoming Acting Governor in 1896 upon the death of Governor Frederic T. Greenhalge. He was elected governor in his own right in 1897, serving until 1900. He was a leading figure in the Young Republican Club, which revitalized the Massachusetts Republican Party in the 1890s.

William Jay Youmans (1838-1901) in 1872, he abandoned his medical practice to assist his brother in establishing the Popular Science Monthly, and subsequently was associated in editing. After his brother's death in 1887, he became its editor-in-chief, remaining in that position until 1900.

Others – including various professors in and out of his field, business associates, attorneys and friends.

       Sample Quotations:

“Mr. Lane,


Dear Sir,


At the last meeting of the Signet, March 14, a vote of thanks was passed for your kindness in lending us your boxing gloves. The queer-looking eyes and noses that were seen the next morning showed that the gloves were fully appreciated and were put to good use.


Yours respectfully,


H.D. Arnold

Secretary pro tem

March 18, 1884”


“Florence, Nov. 1, 1885, 11 Via della Colomia


My dear Lane,


Gus Lord wrote to me a long time ago (he hasn’t written since) that you were expecting to come abroad last summer, so your letter wasn’t such a surprise as to give me dangerous shock, although it made me feel ugly to think I had just missed striking you at Heidelberg. I’m afraid I shall not see you in the spring, as I mean to spend January, February, and March in Spain, and then three months in Paris. However, it’s pleasant to think of your being so near (comparatively speaking); and I suppose it isn’t absolutely impossible that you may turn your steps Paris-ward during the April vacation -that isn’t a bad season to see the city.


I think you’ll enjoy your stay in Heidelberg very much. I have a particular affection for the place. Fr. Philippe’s house I found excellent in every respect, but I infer from your letter that you are not stopping there. E.P. Warren, ’83, was in the town when I was there, and he boarded at the Müllers’, across the way. I found him considerably improved. He is studying classics at Oxford. Did you know John Davis,’80, a friend of Gus Lord? He as at Fr. Philippe’s with his sister and a fellow named Frye. I’ve just met them again here in Florence, where they stopped a week on their way down to Rome and Naples. They will be in Paris during the winter. Warren told me that Rousmaniere was at Weimar; but I didn’t see him nor hear from him directly, although I spent two weeks last summer at Erfurt (visiting a German friend) and two more in Leipzig. Perhaps you know Walter Curtis,’83. His mother and sisters stopped in the same house with me here in Florence; they say he is in business in Spain.


As for me, I am grinding like a fiend just at present. The end of my three years has come so near that it frightens me. I have found a good boarding house, and work all the Italian speaking people for all they are worth. I take lessons in the language, and am working up my Romance philology and French literature; at the same time I am wrestling with Olendorff’s Spanish Grammar.


Tell me all about your doings at Heidelberg. And if you have any more news, fresh or stale, let me have it; all my Harvard correspondents seem to have gone back on me, and my only source of information is the newspapers. I was very glad to hear something about the fellows from your last letter. Send me another before the rain (which has lasted now a month solid) makes an Atlantic of Italy, and in the meantime believe me,

Yours sincerely C.H. Grandgent”


 “Office of Popular Science Monthly

1, 3 & 5 Bond Street

New York, 28 Feb 1888



Mr. Alfred C. Lane:


Dear Sir,

We find your article entitled ‘The geological tourist in Europe’ very well suited to our pages, & shall be glad to print it, if you can accept an honorarium of twenty-five dollars, & are not anxious for publication at once. At present we are very much crowded with mater that has been accumulating for several months past, & must work some of it off before we can insert more recent contributions.


Very truly yours,

W.J. Youmans”


“July 11, ‘92


My dear Mr. Lane:


I thank you hastily for the contribution to the Sacco-Vanzetti defense fund. I think the prosecution has been quite unwarranted on the part of the government, as they could have cleaned the matter up at the time had they tried to find the truth, instead of just getting two ‘reds.’


I am hoping confidently on acquittal, but we can never tell.


I enclose you an article describing the manner of […. …] are accused - And not one penny up to date, has the state provided for their defense.


Very truly yours,

Elizabeth Gendower Evans”



7 March 95

‘Day of D. Webster’s Apostacy’


Dear Mr. Lane,


Yours is received. I think Fred Douglass in his letter beats all the white men in his fine English. It was one of his very last things. It was a written a while after the dinner, tho dated before. Mr. Hoar stirred up A.B. Johnson at the dinner to press for it. Mr. Johnson did not know till after Douglass’ death that his request had taken effect.


I think the letters add greatly to the interest of the pamphlet do you not?


It is pleasant to think that I am to have a perpetual place in your household.


What a pity it is that there are not freedmen to care for – or that Mrs. Lane and myself might meet again!


I had a rare hand the other day. The first of the kind I ever had to have my conversation quoted in a New Haven pulpit by T.T. Munger, something to the effect that one of three things was needed to make our people earnest & write off vile games – a great question like that of slavery, a civil war or a revival of religion.


It was melancholy at Gen. Tufts funeral to note that of his thousands of political associates we two were all who were there to pay the last tribute.

Yours truly, Edward L. Pierce”


Chase S. Osborn, Sault De Sainte Marie, Michigan, Aug. 10, 1910


My dear Dr. Lane:


I was very much pleased to have your good letter from Houghton and to have been in your mind. I am glad that you enjoyed your visit in the North and am very sorry that I could not see you.


Thank you very sincerely indeed for your suggestion that I give a talk to your classes at Tufts College some time. I can assure you that nothing would please me more, and I shall hope that the opportunity may occur.


Thank you for what you say of my son George. I am very glad that he had the opportunity of meeting such a man as you.


It pleases me, too, to have your good wishes politically. I note your suggestion in relation to getting out the votes. We expect to have the Upper Peninsula very thoroughly covered before the primary and the local organizations so perfected that every Republican in the district will cast his vote on September 6.


Hoping that everything is going nicely with you and yours, and with very kindest remembrances I am,

Yours sincerely, Chase S. Obsorn”



“Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Boston, Mass.

May 12, 1911


My dear Professor Lane,


I have before me your kind letter of May 2d, together with the check for $10 which you have so kindly contributed towards a Memorial for my dear wife. I want to thank you very much for your kind expressions and for your gift. I will put it immediately with other gifts that are sent in for this same purpose in order to help swell the sum to the figure which I hope will be very considerable.


I am devoting my financial effort to the preparation of a life of Mrs. Richards which is now going on. Miss Hunt of Washington has come on to Boston on purpose to write the life and we are gathering all the information that we can to make it as true a picture and also as valuable to the rising generation as possible. We have a feeling that her life will be read not only with interest but with profit by the young people.


With kind regards,

Sincerely yours,

Robert H. Richards”



“Washington, D.C., 311 C St., NW, Feb 9, 1916


My dear Mrs. Lane,


Only last night I received your Alfred’s card, which he left for me when he called during my absence. As I was gone nearly six months, from June 15 – Dec 3, and then again from Dec. 23 – Jan 9, the wonder is that the card should have been so carefully preserved in our Superintendent’s desk…


Our Bill has been reintroduced in both Houses, and again I am working for it, and hoping this may [be] God’s time to grant us success…


…I went to West Virginia and Western Pa., holding missionary and temperance meetings, partly in connection with the W.C.T.U., and also with Presbyterian, Methodist, and other churches, besides attending summer training-school, which was very stimulating and helpful.


I went to the Pacific Coast only in season for the National W.C.T.U. Convention, at Seattle, Oct 4-9, thence down the coast having glimpses of the two Expositions, the railroad fares from Los Angeles to San Diego, and return being a gift to all long-ticket tourists…

Love always to you, devotedly yours, Ellen M. Stone”



“United States Senate, Washington, D.C., January 30, 1917


Dear Professor Lane:


Replying to your letter of January twenty-fourth, I am heartily in favor of military training for your men, not only on account of its value in connection with national affairs, but on account of the man himself. I shall therefore support any reasonable proposition for universal military training. Thank you for calling your views regarding this matter to my attention.


Very truly yours,

John W. Weeks”


“United States Senate, Washington, D.C., April 7, 1917


Dear Professor Lane,


I have your letter of the fifth and am sending you under separate cover copies of such bills as have been introduced relating to universal service, and I will send you a copy of the Army Bill which comes from the Department as soon as it is in print. I have been over it and it does not fully conform to the general proposition advanced by the President in his message Monday night. Therefore, it is supposed that this proposed legislation has his approval.


I shall be glad to have you send me the original copy of the statement signed by President Lowell and others as soon as you have gotten the signatures you expect to obtain. I think it would be well, if it is possible to get him to do so, to have President Lowell of the Boston College sign it.


Confidently, I am told that the President has been very much influenced in his present position regarding universal training by a letter which he has received from President Emeritus Eliot of Harvard University and that, in fact, he is very much influenced by Doctor Eliot’s opinions.

Yours very truly,

John W. Weeks”


“Michigan College of Mines, Houghton, Michigan, August 20, 1917


My dear Lane:


On my desk I find your card of the 4th inst. On Friday, and again on Saturday, the 10th and 11th, I called your house several times in an effort to get in touch and learn something about Lauriat, but I could not raise anyone. I was with Dean Anthony at Tufts.


Hugh is, as you say, in S.S.U. 65 His last letter was dated July 24th. For the previous twelve or thirteen days he had been having rather exciting experiences. His division was fighting on the ridge near Craonne, along which runs the Chemin des Dames, over part of which his route lay to the Poste de Secours, a piece of the road, something like half a mile, was under shell fire. The boys called it Fifth Avenue because they said it seemed fully as long, and by contrast reminded them of the crowds on that familiar thoroughfare. In twelve days, his division had lost over 3,000 men, and he thought they would probably be moved out to recuperate at the end of the week. He personally had had but one narrow escape, and while four of the other cars had been hit, not one on the section had been hurt. He seemed well, happy, and fairly contented with his job.


As I understand it, his section is made up mainly of men from Central States, Washington, and Chicago Universities.


I do not have Lauriat’s sectional number. My impression is he expected to be assigned to section 9, but I did not pay sufficiently close attention to what I was told to be sure about it.


We lost our engineers last Friday evening, and the campus looks deserted without the soldier boys. I presume they are nearing their southern encampment by this time.


Very truly yours, F. W. McNair”


Arthur E. Reimer, Attorney at Law, Boston, Mass, 2-28-18


Dear Dr. Lane,


I have been rudely reminded by some of my former colleagues in the Socialist Labor Party that membership in the Peoples Forum ceases automatically with membership in the party and the result has been that the request made by me on your behalf for the credential you requested has been turned down not on the question of its being granted but on the ground that the request came from an outsider and should come from the person directly. Perhaps you can see some logic in this reasoning but I confess that I cannot and I feel that a personal prejudice against me for my attitude had perhaps something to do with it, I mean my disagreement with the organization on mattes pertaining to the big problems of the present day. I have no doubt however that your request would be granted and have been requested to inform you that the present secretary is Mary Peterson 50 Marshall St Somerville Mass to whom I suggest that you write for the desired credential. I regret the delay Doctor but assure you that I have done all possible from this end. Sincerely yours, A.E. Reimer”



“Hon. Henry Cabot Lodge

U.S. Senate

Washington, D.C.


February 8, 1919

My dear Mr. Lodge:


I have no doubt you will hear a great deal in many ways of a league of nations convention. Perhaps you would like to hear from a delegate something about a convention looked at as objectively as he could. The convention is very largely a respectable, what I might call Republican crowd. I was surprised to find how widely it6 was distributed through the State.


I happened to sit by a man from Lowell at the meeting and the first man I was introduced to was from Westfield. His Republican feelings of the audience were indicated by the fact that Ambassador Gerard said he was asked to sign a petition for absolute free trade within the league of nations there was practically  no applause, and when he said he refused and didn’t believe in abondaining protection for the United States, strange as that doctrine might seem from a Democrat, there was very much applause. The temper of the convention was evidently in favor of keeping Germany out until she had shown repentance. There were a few hecklers in behalf of Ireland and Bolsheviks, but the trend of the convention was unmistakably not sympathetic with them.


As I may assume from our previous correspondence, you are not against a league of nations, but are anxious that it should take a practical form. In fact, I presume you realize as well as I that a league of nations is inevitable, and the only question is whether United States should be left outside with Germany and Russia, or whether we shall continue to have our voice in the allocation of raw materials and in the establishment of a court of justice which shall construe the treaties which are to be made.


I sincerely hope that you will not say anything which will lead you to be classed with Senator Reed or Senator Borah, whose indiscreet remark that he would not support a league of nations proposed by Jesus Christ was quoted, and he will hear from it no doubt. The essential points as expounded by President Taft were not inconsistent with Roosevelt’s last letter and were undoubtedly approved by a vast majority of a very large assembly.


I reached Tremont Temple at 10 A.M. for a meeting scheduled at 10:30 and the entrance to the door was so packed that I could progress only at a snail-like pace. I attended the convention as a delegate of the Association of university professors.

Very respectfully, Alfred C. Lane”


“August 16, 1919


My dear Dr. Lane:

It is only at long intervals that I am at home these days, and then only for a few hours. In one of these brief visits I have just seen your letter announcing your arrival in the U.S.A. and am glad to know that you are safely home again. I have some comprehension, I think, of the satisfaction that is yours in the important service you have been able to render in France.


I am glad to have you write as you do about the League of Nations. I have been speaking for it for months past. I do not know at the moment any place I could arrange for you to speak, but I hope you will at once write to President Wilson all the facts you touch on in your letter to me, and offer your services as a speaker.


Thank you for suggestions in relation to Georgia oil possibilities.


Thank you very much for the copy of your address on ‘Socialism and Democracy.’ I shall read it with interest and I know with profit. I hope you will always send me anything of yours that is printed.

With high regard, always, Yours most sincerely, Chase S. Osborn”



“The Globe, Daily and Sunday, Boston Nov 29, 1919


Dear Alfred,


Your letter from France is very interesting. I have had made of it a translation which I am keeping and so return to you the original. Part of what he says will do very well in print, I think.


I am interested to read what you say about the Coolidge boom. Certainly, you have put your finger on the real fact in your opinion that he was elected on a non-partisan issue, that he should be supported by all people whatever party. Consequently, it hardly seems a campaign platform for one party.


What seems like a boom for him just now I think will not materialize into anything more serious unless the Republicans convention should be deadlocked and then someone could suddenly and cleverly spring the name of Coolidge. It might go with a rush before they could stop it. I see no hope for Massachusetts to head any Republican national ticket otherwise.

I thank you for always favoring us when you have anything worth printing.

Very truly yours, W.D. Sullivan”



“House of Representatives

Committee on Military Affairs

Washington, D.C.

January 22, 1920


My dear Mr. Lane,


I have your letter of January 20th relative to the liberalization of our laws regarding immigrants provided they do a term of service in the Army of the United States.


You will be glad to learn that an effort is being made in that direction at this time. Recently a squad of men were brought down to Washington to show the members of Congress how they were being trained not along for military service but also for citizenship. Most of these men were unable to speak the English language four months before. They were mostly aliens, but they had mastered enough English to enable them to understand every word of command and to give words of command themselves. I wish every American could have seen that platoon of soldiers.


It is exceedingly gratifying to know that our fellow citizens are taking an interest in these subjects.

I thank you for having written me, very sincerely yours, Julius Kahn”



“Presiding Circuit Judge of Michigan

Lansing, Michigan

April 26th, 1920


“My dear Doctor,


I was mighty glad to get your little note with the enclosures.


It was a great surprise to us, who thought we knew something about conditions, that Johnson should carry this State by over forty thousand. His strength lies with the pro-Germans, the anti-leaguers, the radical labor men, and a good many of the returned soldiers. I am interested in what the vote will be in California, hoping that Hoover will beat him there. Either Louden or Hoover, or Wood would suit me first rate.


I am going down to the State Convention at Kalamazoo as a delegate, because I am tremendously interested in the outcome. After that I will write you again, as I will know more of the conditions here in Michigan. I can not believe that Johnson will be nominated by the Convention, but he is a trouble maker, and if he starts a third party it would leave results that would seem absolutely certain, quite in the air.


Laura graduates from College this June and goes to Wakefield, in Gogebic County, to teach. She thought she wanted some experience in the Northern Peninsula with the foreign element, and I am quite sure she will get it.


I do not expect to get East this summer, but when we do we certainly will have a good visit with you and Mrs. Lane… Yours very truly, Charles B. Collingwood”



“Clark University

Office of the President

Worcester, Massachusetts

March 29, 1922


My dear Lane:


Thank you for your letter. I have had a very difficult problem, but the experience for me and for the institution may prove to be in the end very profitable.


I now know that the insidious way in which the doctrines of socialism are being taught in American colleges and universities, in part through these special speakers who are sent out by a well-organized central bureau, is a dangerous influence in American life.


My chances of going to Belgium are very poor. I hope you can make it.


Cordially yours,

Wallace W. Atwood”