R[obert] U[nderwood] Johnson
327 Lexington Avenue, N[eW] Y[ork], April 19, 1914.Dear Muir:I am to-day giving a note of introduction to you to my friend Cass Gilbert, the distinguished architect, builder of the great Woolworth building, the N.Y. Custom House, a lot of State Capitols, etc, etc. Gilbert is also a member of the national Fine Arts Commission, and it was he who suggested that we should try to get the Hetch Hetchy matter referred to the Commission, as the beautifying of the Canal Zone was. You will find him very sympathetic and a thoroughly good fellow. Mrs. Gilbert, who goes with him to San Francisco, is also very agreeable. They leave April 21.Confidentially, I believe that he will be the next member of the Academy to be elected next fall, as a dozen of us are exporting his nomination.Mrs. Harriman, who has just gone abroad for a month, has written me twice expressing sympathy with the aims of the Academy in its effort to promote literature and the arts. I have told you that we have had a gift of a fine site (200 x 100) and of [illegible]100,000 to begin the endowment fund. We want nine other persons to give us the same amount, and I hope she will be one. If we carry out our plans - and I have reason to think that three other persons of large means Will help, and I am hard at work soliciting - the Secretaryship of the Academy will be my chief work henceforth. Everybody in the Academy who knows of it is delighted at the fine beginning that I have made. The difficulty is going to be to keep my head above water till I've obtained the money, as I have a lot of fixed charges to meet and I can't get anything from a friend who owes me $3000.Do you think of anyone in California (not Mrs. Hearst) whom it might be worth while to approach as a possible donor or founder of the Academy? If so, let me have the name and address. It will be an honorable and distinguished thing to do, and we should of course celebrate the founders in the building and otherwise.I'm glad my friends the Frieses have seen you. They report you improved in health. May the Spring have restored you completely before this letter reaches you.I think of you continually, and always with affection andesteem.Faithfully yours,R. U. JOHNSON05740
1914 Apr 19
Original letter dimensions: 20.5 x 26 cm.
Reel 22, Image 0293
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