JANUARY 21, 1941
WASHINGTON, Monday —I flew down to Washington Sunday morning after celebrating my daughter and son-in-law's wedding anniversary in New York City with them on Saturday evening. We dined together as we used to do when they lived in this part of the country. Then we went to see "Louisiana Purchase," a musical comedy, and ended up at the Plaza Hotel, where they were fascinated by the dancing.
Once in Washington, our day was full. First a lunch given for the Chairman of the Democratic National Committee, Mr. Edward J. Flynn, and his campaign workers. This was a buffet party at little tables, so everybody could choose their own partners. I think it was a gay and happy gathering.
Then, in the afternoon, the children and I tried to do more tea parties than can usually be accomplised in two or three hours! First we went to Ambassador and Mrs. Joseph Davies' party for the Governors of the various states and the Inaugural Committee. Then I went to the Women's National Democratic Club, later I went on to Mr. Oscar Ewing's party for the Chairman of the National Democratic Committee and Mrs. Flynn, and, finally, some of us went to a private party, rather to the surprise of our host, I think!
After dinner we went to the concert in Constitution Hall, which Mrs. Edwin Watson had arranged. Mr. Robert Sherwood was master of ceremonies and I am sure that everyone enjoyed every minute of the evening.
I, for one, flew to the window on awakening this morning, remembering how wet it was four years ago driving down from the Capitol in an open car. It is a most beautiful day, a little on the cold side, but we are grateful that it is not raining.
Because of that fact that this is the first time a President has been inaugurated for a third term, I think everyone has felt there is a special history interest in this occasion. Every detail of the day will be carried over the radio and in the press, so there is little need for me to tell you about it. I looked at my children, at the President's mother, and then at the President himself, and wondered what each one was feeling down in his heart of hearts. I feel that any citizen should be willing to give all that he has to give to his country in work or sacrifice in times of crisis.
It must be given willingly and joyously. This I am sure the President knows today. But in spite of the will to give, there must be a sense of grave responsibility and deep humility in the face of such tremendous problems.
I have felt great gratitude for Mr. Wendell Willkie's forthright support of the Administration's foreign policy in the last few days and am sure that is the feeling of many people throughout the nation as they face the solemnity of January 20, 1941.