MAY 30, 1942
ARTHURDALE, W.Va., Friday—I was not able yesterday to tell you that I ended my day on Wednesday in New York City by going over to the Wanamaker Auditorium to speak with two other people at a youth rally under the auspices of the Friends of Democracy Inc., and the Greenwich Village Center.
A great many young people were there. The subject discussed by all the speakers was our attitude toward Axis propaganda. I think the most effective speaker was Miss Lisa Sergio, because she had actually been a Fascist and could speak from experience on the effect of propaganda on youth.
Miss Naomi Block and three of her friends from Hunter College walked back with me to my apartment afterwards. They are tremendously proud of the way in which Hunter College has met every war demand. I think in the book campaign alone they have collected more books than any other college in the city. Dr. George Shuster, the President of Hunter College, has the gift of inspiring the students to take seriously their responsibilities to the community. After giving the girls milk and cookies, I shooed them out and made ready to take the night train back to Washington.
I arrived there at 7:00 o'clock this morning and walked through a crowd of khaki clad soldiers in the station, and was glad to see both the USO canteen and lounge being used.
At noon, a group of people who own a building in Washington which they have used as a hostel, came in to talk to me about the possibilities of its present use. I am sure it can be of great value if they find the group which really needs it for war purposes.
Several people came to lunch. Appointments during the afternoon which lasted until nearly 6:00 o'clock, made the day a fairly busy one. I tried to catch up on my mail in between times before I left Washington again last night to give the commencement address today at the high school in Arthurdale, West Virginia.
There are always a great many people I should like to see when I come to Arthurdale, but I am particularly anxious this afternoon, before taking the train back to Washington, to visit the community in Scotts Run. It happens to be very near Osage, where they had the mine tragedy only a few weeks ago. I know that Mr. and Mrs. Smith have been doing all they could to help the poor families who lost their main support in that accident. This young couple gather together the young people and older ones, and form a center for the social life of that whole mining area.