A few days later Lane started to Washington in an attempt to raise money for the rebuilding of San Francisco. When he found that Congress would not act in this matter, he, with Senator Newlands, of Nevada, and some others, went to the President and the Secretary of the Treasury to see if Federal help could be secured for the ruined city.
To William R. Wheeler
New York, June 23, 
My dear will,—I have just returned from Washington, where I hope we have accomplished some good for San Francisco, although it was mighty hard to move anyone except the President and the Secretary of the Treasury. But I did not intend to write of anything but your personal affairs. Yesterday, on the train, I discovered that you had met with another fire. This is rubbing it in, hitting a man when he is down. The Gods don’t fight fair. The decent rules of the Marquis of Queensberry seem to have no recognition on Olympus, or wherever the Gods live. I can quite appreciate the strain you are under and the monumental difficulties of your situation, dealing as you are with dispirited old men and indifferent young ones, I hope this last blow will have some benefit which I cannot now perceive, else it must come like almost a knock-out to the concern. Brave, strong, bully old boy, no one knows better than I do what a fight you have been making these last few years and how many unkindnesses fortune has done you. There is not much use either in preaching to one’s self or to another, the advantages of adversity. I don’t believe that men are made by fighting relentless Fate, the stuff they have is sometimes proved by struggle,—that is the best that can be said for such philosophy.