JANUARY 14, 1939
WASHINGTON, Friday—Yesterday afternoon I talked with a group which is planning to hold a conference here shortly to deal primarily with the problems confronting rural youth which migrates to the cities. One might think that this means a fairly restricted subject, but it really covers every problem facing youth anywhere, because conditions in rural areas which cause migration must be understood as well as the conditions in urban areas where these young people go to find work and live their lives. The problems include education, vocational guidance, vocational work, recreation, housing, in fact everything which touches the lives of young people everywhere.
During the few minutes we spent together, I became increasingly grateful that I was being asked to preside at a dinner held while this group is meeting here. Senator Capper and Dr. John Studebaker, Commissioner of the Office of Education of the Department of the Interior, will be speakers. Both of them are fortunately far better able to give something really valuable from their own experience to the discussion of these problems.
Just as this group was leaving, I was told my son, Franklin, Jr., and his wife were about to depart for Charlottesville, Virginia, with our youngest grandson, and so I ran out to say goodbye. The baby has been here since before Christmas and I really hate to see him go. It is curious how you come to feel a baby is an important factor in a household, even though you only spend a very short time every day with him. Nearly every morning, Franklin, III, was brought down to my room and we went visiting together. First we saw his grandfather and then anyone else who might be in the house. He even sat in my lap and solemnly "listened" while I went over the details of meals and household management with the housekeeper, Mrs. Nesbitt. We think he acquired two teeth as the last achievement of his visit! We know that his angelic disposition won him many friends, for everyone tells me they hope he will be back soon.
Ambassador and Mrs. Daniels were with us last night for dinner. It is always a particular pleasure to welcome these old friends.
The Congressional reception took place last evening. This reception has grown to such proportions that we were obliged to limit it this year to members of Congress and their families, which meant that many people could not bring out of town guests. This seems a rigid rule, but it is made as much for the pleasure of the guests as for the benefit of the hosts. When these receptions grow too large, no one can enjoy dancing or even reach the table in the State Dining Room for a little refreshment.
Today I am on my way to New York City, where I shall lunch with some of my family and then proceed to the country for a quiet weekend.