JANUARY 12, 1943
WASHINGTON, Monday—Owing to the fact that my daughter and son-in-law, who were coming in from Seattle, Wash., by train yesterday morning to do some very urgent business here in Washington, arrived several hours late, I spent some time in the Union Station waiting for them.
I think I signed several hundred autographs in the USO lounge and I talked about my British visit to a number of boys. I noticed one boy, with an MP band on his arm, standing around for quite a time and I later found that he was from Albany, N. Y., and that he had worked in the Ten Eyck Hotel, so he had often seen my husband and myself when we lived in Albany. I suppose, not being able to get home, it gave him a sense of being nearer home to talk to someone who knew his hometown.
In the afternoon I went to the exhibition, at the Pan-American building, of a photographic contest held in eighteen American republics. I thought the photographs were particularly interesting because they showed such a good cross section of each country that one really saw what the whole country was like.
There are some really beautiful photographs among them, both of scenery and of types of people. I never realized before how similar all old people become, no matter how different their types may be in middle age!
There also are some very interesting wooden carvings in a room just opposite the room in which the photographic exhibition is held. All in all, I think there is a great deal of interest to be found in the Pan-American building. So I was glad to find a good many people there and hope the experiment of opening it on Sunday afternoons will be successful.
I walked up from there with two young girls who had just come from the Deep South to work in Washington and who were seeing their first snowstorm. They both seemed very happy about their experiences and work here, which was pleasant to find. I left them at the Corcoran Art Gallery to go in to look at Eliot O'Hara's watercolors, which are on sale there for the benefit of the Russian Relief Fund. These watercolors were painted in Russia in '39, before the war reached the country. They are beautiful in color and they gave me more sense of sunshine and of the Oriental influence on Russian architecture that I previously had.
A few friends had supper with us last evening and we saw a short film of our visit in Great Britain, which was sent us by Mr. Brendan Bracken, the British Minister of Information, and then a film entitled "A Journey for Margaret," which I hope a great many people in this country may see. The spirit and feel of it is very remarkable.