MARCH 17, 1945
NEW YORK, Friday—Yesterday in Washington I lunched with a group of women who appeared on a panel arranged by Mrs. Charles Tillett, vice-chairman of the Democratic National Committee, and a number of other women interested in the meeting.
This was the first time that I have heard the women speak together who represented us on each of the international groups which have already considered special subjects. Miss Josephine Schain covered the food and agriculture conference; Mrs. Ellen Woodward, the relief and rehabilitation; Dr. Mabel Newcomer, the international monetary conference at Bretton Woods; Dean Mildred Thompson, the international education conference in London; Secretary of Labor, Miss Perkins, the international labor organization; Mrs. Thomas McAllister, the aviation conference; and Dr. Harriet Elliott, the Dumbarton Oaks proposals.
The summing up was made by Charles P. Taft of the State Department, who told some humorous stories apropos of his facing a group largely made up of Democrats, since this particular effort was one of education for Democratic women.
I imagine the women's division of the Republican National Committee is carrying on much the same kind of educational program, and, of course, the nonpartisan organizations of women are doing a splendid job along these lines.
It was particularly appropriate that Mrs. Woodrow Wilson could be with us. She must feel a great sense of hope in these days, when her husband's prediction that someday his ideas would be accepted and carried to fruition seems about to come true. That does not mean, of course, that there will not be much discussion on every step of a final international organization, nor do I fail to realize the pitfalls and possibilities of defeat. But so many more people seem to be aware of the seriousness of the alternative, that I cannot help but hope for some kind of foundation being organized in San Francisco.
I hope that all communities throughout the country are meeting to organize and appoint local chairmen to solicit contributions of clothing from every family during United National Clothing Collection in April. The big organizations—Rotary, Kiwanis, Lions—are hoping for the help not only of national organizations but also of local groups. We all know it takes time to collect, sort, pack and ship the amount of clothing which is going to be needed for the people in war-torn countries. Next winter will be upon us before we know it, and the need will then be very great. In rural areas, county extension agents can be a great help in getting local people to do the work. I hope in the course of the next few days that Dan West, executive secretary of the drive, will hear that the organization of communities throughout the country is practically complete.