From Volume 9 of the Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda – Letters – Fifth Series
20 February 1894.
My lectures here are over. I have made some very good friends here, amongst them Mr. Palmer,* President of the late World’s Fair. I am thoroughly disgusted with this Slayton* business and am trying hard to break loose. I have lost at least $5,000 by joining this man. Hope you are all well. Mrs. Bagley and her daughters are very kind to me. I hope to do some private lecturing here and then go to Ada and then back to Chicago. It is snowing here this morning. They are very nice people here, and the different clubs took a good deal of interest in me.
It is rather wearisome, these constant receptions and dinners; and their horrible dinners — a hundred dinners concentrated into one — and when in a man’s club, why, smoking on between the courses and then beginning afresh. I thought the Chinese alone make a dinner run through half a day with intervals of smoking!!
However,they are very gentlemanly men and, strange to say, an Episcopal clergyman* and a Jewish rabbi* take great interest in me and eulogize me. Now the man who got up the lectures here got at least a thousand dollars. So in every place. And this is Slayton’s duty to do for me. Instead, he, the liar, had told me often that he has agents everywhere and would advertise and do all that for me. And this is what he is doing. His will be done. I am going home. Seeing the liking the American people have for me, I could have, by this time, got a pretty large sum. But Jimmy Mills* and Slayton were sent by the Lord to stand in the way. His ways are inscrutable.
However, this is a secret. President Palmer has gone to Chicago to try to get me loose from this liar of a Slayton. Pray that he may succeed. Several judges here have seen my contract, and they say it is a shameful fraud and can be broken any moment; but I am a monk — no self-defence. Therefore, I had better throw up the whole thing and go to India.
My love to Harriets, Mary, Isabelle, Mother Temple, Mr. Matthews, Father Pope and you all.