Colonel House to Woodrow Wilson
Thank you for your letter of yesterday enclosing Lansing's memorandum as to what preparatory work he thinks necessary for the peace conference. He has done it very well and his ideas are not far from mine.
I have the matter of organization pretty well outlined in my own mind, subject to your approval. I think it will be necessary to have three men working closely with me here, besides those studying special problems.
Among those here, I had thought tentatively of Mezes and Lippman. Mezes to be my confidential man and Lippman to be secretary. The objection to Lippman is that he is a Jew, but unlike other Jews he is a silent one. The small group around me must be in thorough sympathy with your purposes.
The City College, I am sure, will be glad to give Mezes indefinite leave of absence if you approve his selection. Could he be objected to because he is Mrs. House's brother-in-law? He is one of the ablest men I know, has a broad progressive outlook, is well grounded in both political and economic history, speaks French and German and understands Italian and Spanish.
Thanks to Frankfurter, quite a number of people know that you have this owrk in mind for me to do, and David Lawrence has already mentioned it in his dispatches. However, this is not important for the reason that the other belligerents are well advanced in such work.Lansing's attitude is just what I expected. I have never found the slightest trace of petty jealousy in him as far as I am concerned.
115 East 53rd Street,