DECEMBER 15, 1938
WASHINGTON, Wednesday—The weather was indeed kind to me yesterday. I don't know what I should have done if I had not been able to fly, but as it was, I actually found myself at the airport with ten minutes to spare. I had lunched at the Men's City Club, in New York City, and the chairman had asked me to give briefly some of my impressions of the country as a whole. That seemed to me such a tall order, that I decided to confine myself to one or two stories from different parts of the country and then answer questions.
This meeting, as well as the meeting run by Mr. James McDonald on Monday evening at the Brooklyn Institute of Arts and Sciences, proved the fact that properly trained audiences, under properly trained chairmen, can carry on a most satisfactory "question and answer period." I like this, because I feel that my audience is actually having the subjects which interest them discussed. The only drawback to this period is that now and then people who are not accustomed to asking questions will launch forth and make a speech which takes such a long time that the question is never reached.
While in New York, a very interesting institution was brought to my attention. It is the Altro Workshops in New York City. This institution is operated for the purpose of returning to society cured tuberculosis patients who have learned to do some kind of work which is suited to their capacity, even though they will not be able to carry on the same occupations which they were engaged in before their illness. There is a small home doing similar work in Boston, and I imagine there are others in different parts of the world. While this work is done under the auspicies of a Jewish committee, it accepts patients on a non-sectarian basis and I feel that many people will be interested in seeing the results which have been accomplished.
Lady Lindsay brought Captain Anthony Eden and Mrs. Eden to tea with us yesterday afternoon. He has all the charm of an Englishman of culture and diplomatic experience. She is pretty and attractive and very well suited to the difficult position of the wife of a public official.
The first official entertainment of the season took place last night, the dinner given for the members of the Cabinet. Miss Stell Andersen played the new piano, Mr. Mack Harrell sang and Miss Chaney and Mr. Fox danced. It was a delightful program and one which everybody seemed to enjoy.
The press spent an hour with me this morning and there were a number of appointments including a photograph taken of a group selling me one of the tuberculosis Christmas Seals. I am about to go down to the Navy Yard and I will tell you about that tomorrow.