Peabody dropped in yesterday from Chicago. (I have forgotten whether you knew him well or not.) Able chap, fond of me, as I of him. My boy works for him. He sent me a gorgeous edition of Burton’s Anatomy of Melancholy which I have always wanted, largely because it is one of the curiosities of the world. ...
Write me as often as your Quaker spirit moves you to utterance. Your dinner got quite a send-off in these papers, which is something, for New York to recognize Boston! Terribly tough job though. Poor babies! Hard to believe in a good God and a kind God, isn’t it?
I hear talk of shoving Hoover outside the breastworks. Fools! Fools! Best for him but worse for the country. Whole question of Republican success turns on the largeness of Harding. I don’t ask a Lincoln—much less will do. If he is only a smooth-footed politician he will fail. So far he has been the gentleman. ...
My love to your whole circle, from Grandmother down.
F. K. L.
To John G. Gehring
Rochester, Minnesota, December 31, 
My dear padre,—It is the last night of an unhappy year. Never do I wish for such another. No joy—defeat, dreary waiting. These words describe not merely my personal history and attitude but fairly picture those of the world. It took guts to live through such an unillumined, non-productive, soul-depressing year. Did any good come out of it? Yes, to me just one thing good—I came to know you, your Lady and the beauteousness of Bethel. And after all a man does not do any better in any year than make a friend. No man makes seventy friends in a life-time, does he? So I must not repine nor let the year go out in bitterness. On the credit side of my account book I have something that can be carried over into 1921, whereas most people can only carry over Hope.
I hope there is something significant and more than suggestive in my turning up here on the last day of the year for examination— “Getting a ready on” for a New Year—that’s what you would optimistically shout if you were here, I know. And that is my Goodbye word to 1920—“You haven’t beaten me, and I have lived to take your brush.”
I am being ground and wound and twisted and fed into and out of the Mayo mill, and a great mill it is. Of course they are giving me a private view, so to speak. Distinguished consideration is a modest word for the way in which I am treated—not because of my worth but because of my friends—. Those men are greater as organizers, I believe, than as workmen, which is saying much indeed, for they are the surgeons supreme. ... Two to three hundred people, new people, a day pass through [their shop]. Sixty to seventy thousand a year received, examined, diagnosed, treated perhaps, operated on (fifty per cent), and cared for. The machinery for this is colossal and superbly arranged.