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"Correspondence, August 1919", Item 027

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August 23, 1919 My dear Mrs. Gardiner: Your card this morning was a great relief. We had a dreadful day of uneasiness yesterday, fearing that you might have received Mrs. Lewis's letter first, and thought that the time had come for immediate action, as Mrs. Lewis had left it to me to inform you of the details of the situation, but her letter had preceded mine by several hours. This sounds very cryptic, but the circumstances seemed more so. Yesterday morning when I reached the Capitol I was informed by Major Stringfellow, who has been doing a good bit of lobbying for suffrage, and of late seems to have practically adopted the view-point of the Woman's Party in advocating immediate action, that he had had a long distance phone call from Washington, purporting to be from Mr. Cummins, informing him that a message from the President was to be sent to the Legislature that morning. As the Governor had not as yet transmitted the amendment, and as his delay had been occasioned by our request, we were very much perturbed, as we felt that a message from the President before the amendment was really before the House might be inopportune. Major Stringfellow, however, said he thought the message was a hoax, and that probably somebody was trying to put up a joke on him, as he had heard Cummins was out of town. He asked me not to say anything about this, but of course I laid the matter before Mrs. Lewis and our committee, and we decided that I had better long distance you immediately. I of course found out then that you were not in Washington, and I inferred that you had not received our letters in time to have acted on them. I then called Mrs. Ellis Meredith, who was also out of town. But Mrs. Taylor who was in the office the day I called at National Democratic Headquarters spoke to me, and I told her that I had been informed that the Natl. Democratic Committee was pressing for ratification by Virginia at his extra session, but that our poll did not show us any prospect of victory, as even our best friends were in many cases opposed to a consideration of the question just now. I did not mention our having asked you for assistance with the White House, as of course I did not know whether that would be correct. I impressed her with the fact that we felt that pressure from the Natl. Democratic Committee for action just now would be premature, and she promised to let me know immediately what was occurring in Washington at their headquarters. I have heard form her this morning that Mr. Cummins, Mrs. Bass and Mrs. Meredith are all away, and she was unable to secure any definite information.