Lodge Writes His Memoirs

THE first volume of HENRY CABOT LODGE’S Many Memories has issued from the press. One wonders whether it will become “a best seller.” It ought to, since it unites interesting content with charm of style, and since it covers with its reminiscences a period of our history most important and sketches nearly everybody of note in those days.

Senator LODGE of Massachusetts is not a hail-fellow-well-met and slap-you-on-the-back sort of chap like his lifelong friend, ROOSEVELT. But neither is he an aristocratic snob. Devotion to the Republic is in his blood, and devotion to the Republic can be associated with intellectual culture as well as with lack of it. The day has gone when a man had to prove his democracy by smoking a corncob pipe.

Moreover, although followers of THOMAS JEFFERSON just now run the Government in Washington, there are other patriots than the disciples of the Monticello sage. One can avow oneself a Hamiltonian politically and yet be counted as patriot and republican.

There are still two schools of political thought in this country, and neither is entitled to ostracize the other. The Virginia school of JEFFERSON and the Tennessee school of JACKSON are American all right; but by this same token so was that of HAMILTON and JAY, WEBSTER and MARSHALL, to which LODGE belongs.

Of that mode of thought, Senator LODGE in this our time is a good representative, and if anyone wants to disagree with him, well enough. But that dissenter has no right to such intolerance as would bar LODGE from the pale of good Americans. LODGE is as good and patriotic as American as anybody, and he wouldn’t be LODGE were he otherwise.

However, it is not his political opinions that make the charm and interest of his book. He follows a practice to be commended to all statesmen — to write their own history and not to leave that task to others. What would not the world give for the memories of many a misunderstood and much attacked statesman — for GLADSTONE’S, for example.

Mr. LODGE is now writing of his younger years. It is to be hoped he will be equally candid when he writes of his political experience. Then his memories will be appreciated by posterity, which is likely to see in Colonel ROOSEVELT’s autobiography rather a propaganda than a narration. Anyhow, the two friends’ books about their respective selves will furnish light in the future, materially corrective, perhaps, upon this our time.