OCTOBER 14, 1936
KANSAS CITY, Mo.—We had several stops yesterday fairly late. One at Syracuse, then one at Garden City, which made me feel that I had moved back in some miraculous way to New York State! Our last stop was at nine-ten at Dodge City, Kansas, I always feel that these evening stops must be very unsatisfactory but apparently the lights playing on the back platform do illuminate it sufficiently for the crowd to see all those who stand there.
Always at these stops some people try to reach up and shake hands with the President, and it seems too bad that everyone who wishes to, can not do this, but the time is so short and the crowd so great that with the best will in the world, it would be impossible.
I get a great deal of amusement out of the little boys and girls who chase the train at every station, and keep going as long as the train is going slowly enough so they can keep up with it. One little fellow remarked the other day: "Next time you come, I'll get me a horse."
I am always a little anxious about them too for one day I saw one fairly big child fall down and the crowd surged on so fast I was afraid they would trample him.
Today at Emporia we had an amusing time with Mr. William Allen White. He was a good sport enough to come down to the train and I think the crowd enjoyed very much seeing two men together who can be friendly enemies for a part of every four years at least!
I have seen a number of women who are working for our party or who have worked for it in the past, and talked with them on many subjects. They all seem to agree that never before do they remember as much interest in public affairs.
Campaign trains always give me a little feeling of a busy factory, because so many people are busily engaged in turning out ideas to meet different situations as they arrive. If you sit in the President's car and see streams of people go by and hear him ask the inevitable questions:—"How are things in your state; did the drought do much harm; what are you people counting on to help you in your recovery", and then see him picking up everybody's ideas, discarding some, remoulding some into his own speeches, you realize that you are really watching an idea factory at work, through which the American people get a picture of the President's thinking, his character, and his plans for the future. You go and listen to every speech, sharpening your critical faculties and asking yourself how successfully is this informing the people of the nation?