OCTOBER 10, 1938
WASHINGTON, Sunday—I have just been reading a letter from a friend who had a little cottage built on the sand dunes on the Massachusetts coast with a most beautiful view of the ocean. Sad to say, when the wind and water decided to go on the rampage, everything she had was washed away and what was once their cottage is strewn about what is left of the sand dunes. She has taken it very philosophically as far as personal losses go, but grieves over the damage the storm has done to the physical beauty of that part of the country she loves. I quite understand her feeling, but when nature takes things into her own hands, one simply has to accept whatever she does, for puny human beings can not stand up against her. That is why I can never quite understand it when human beings deliberately ruin nature's beauty for profit.
A good example of this is a place on the Hudson River which I frequently pass. It is a quarry which is gradually eating into Mt. Taurus, located almost opposite West Point. There are many other places not far distant which could furnish crushed stone, and yet this place is being quarried for someone's profit, I suppose. The natural beauty which would be enjoyed by so many is being destroyed forever. I often wonder why public opinion is not sufficiently aroused to do something about this particular desecration, but I am afraid many people, as usual, remain apathetic, so we will down a permanent eyesore to the next generations.
Friday night, in New York City, I went to see Fred Stone in "Lightnin'" as Mr. John Golden's guest. I had the pleasure of going backstage for a few minutes to tell Mr. Stone how delightful I found his interpretation of the part. Years ago, I remember enjoying Mr. Frank Bacon in this same play and my appreciation of it was even keener last night. The rest of the cast is, on the whole, very good, but it is worthwhile seeing Mr. Stone alone. First, he is inscrutable as the kindly, amiable and slightly bibulous gentleman, and then utterly disarming as the entirely sober, sweet inmate of the veteran's home. I think I liked him best when he returns to his tall story telling in the last act.
Yesterday we came back to Washington, where my orgy of theatre going continued, for I had the pleasure of seeing Mr. Massey in "Abe Lincoln in Illinois" last night. It is a most interesting play, very well acted. I hope it will attain its deserved success in New York City and that many people will see it. I have never seen a Washington audience more enthusiastic.