DECEMBER 12, 1939
WASHINGTON, Monday—Yesterday afternoon I went over to see and hear part of the program given by the Gridiron Club members at their dinner Saturday night. They repeated some of the songs for the benefit of the ladies, who are excluded from the dinner. What talent and wit there is among these gentlemen! They not only write clever songs, but they sing and act extraordinarily well. I enjoyed it very much and shall find it difficult to forget how much one can say in using the one word "quack."
Last night the movie, "Drums Along The Mohawk" was shown here. Though I was not able to see the whole of the picture, I viewed some of the most beautiful scenes in color that I have ever seen. Among our guests were Mr. and Mrs. Ernan Forbes-Dennis, who are English friends of my mother-in-law, and whom we have known for a number of years. She is the novelist, Phyllis Bottome and on her way to Hollywood, I believe, to supervise the production of a picture taken from one of her books.
At my press conference this morning, Mrs. Ernest Lindley and Mrs. Edward Costigan gave an account of the National Youth Administration conference on girls' projects which was held in Denver, Colorado. I think everyone was interested in this and I know it is very valuable to have the work for girls evaluated in an effort to find a greater variety of occupations and work experience for them.
Later I went to the opening concert of Mrs. Lawrence Townsend's regular winter series and enjoyed it more than I could say. Madame Lina Pagliughi has a most beautiful voice and though her time in this country is short, I am sure that the music lovers who do hear her will enjoy her.
Mr. John Amadio, the flutist, and Mr. Egon Petri, the pianist, gave delightful programs. It was evident from the size of the audience and their applause that they appreciated every number.
I think we have developed a little in the past twenty-five years, for I can remember during the World War hearing people say that they never again wanted to hear music by composers who happened to be of this or that nationality. I am thankful to say that so far, nothing as stupid as that seems to be felt. The one thing which is above war, is art. We can still enjoy music and pictures and theatres and books, no matter what the nationality of the artist may be.
I picked up a colored print at a charity bazaar by a Czechslovakian, T. Bimon, taken from a painting by Hradcany. It is a really beautiful view of the city of Prague. I bought it, of course, to give away and now I hate to part with it. However, perhaps the gifts one would like to keep are the ones most worth giving away.