JULY 8, 1940
HYDE PARK, Sunday—Early Friday morning we started to drive half way across this state. My husband had a grand time asking everyone where Odessa was, and when the natural response would come—that Odessa was in Russia and on the Black Sea—he would gleefully remark: "My wife is going there on Friday and will be back Saturday night."
There is an Odessa in New York State in the Finger Lake section. We enjoyed its beautiful location and the historical interest of the old Fontainebleau, where we dined. A group gathered after dinner, at the invitation of the proprietors, Mr. and Mrs. Ericksen, to ask me questions about the problems of youth, with special reference to the American Youth Congress.
At this meeting I had expected to talk in a nonpartisan way on a nonpartisan subject, and then to be asked questions by people who were really anxious to know something about the problems facing young people today. Rather to my surprise, I found that, while I might have thought in this way, the meeting was to have a political tinge. Our hosts, and I suppose the neighborhood, had not been able to forget that I am a Democrat, and so had provided an eminent Republican, Mr. Mark Sullivan, to speak with me.
Although I have made it a rule never to speak at a bi-partisan meeting, or to enter into debates, I enjoyed this occasion. I was particularly grateful to my delightful opponent because he gave me an opportunity to bring out many things which I would not otherwise have thought of saying.
The only thing which troubled me was an accusation made by my opponent against the Dies Committee. He said that this congressional committee charged with the duty of investigation for the protection of the people of the United States, had been influenced by my attendance at two of their hearings. It was claimed that the committee had therefore not said as strongly as it might otherwise have, the things in which it really believed.
I cannot for a minute entertain the thought that a congressional committee, headed by patriotic Mr. Martin Dies, would put consideration for any woman, no matter to whom she might be married, ahead of duty to the nation as a whole.
It is a long time since I have driven in leisurely fashion through any part of New York State, and I enjoyed it very much. There is great variety in this state. Though I love and enjoy many other parts of the United States, I cannot help having an especially soft spot in my heart for the State of New York.
We spent Friday night with Miss Flora Rose in her house on the Cornell University campus. It was an inspiration to see her, as it always is. Our drive back on Saturday was as beautiful as the drive out had been. After the radio program, given in Poughkeepsie last night, we went rather wearily to bed. Today is lovely again and the President is taking us all to church.