My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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NEW YORK, Thursday—I am delighted with the response to the French missionary's letter which I published recently in my column. It is impossible to thank individually the people who have sent me contributions, since the number is very great. We have not quite reached our goal as yet, but I want to thank all those who have contributed towards the purchase of the church bell which Father Delemer requested for his African mission congregation.

I am sending the money immediately to the Liberty Carillons company, and I am also sending a letter which offers a school bell not used now. I do not know if it is suitable for the purpose, but the company will have to make the decision. In any case, I am most grateful to the kind person who has suggested giving this unused bell and will let her know as soon as I learn whether or not it is suitable.

As I wrote previously, any money received above what is needed for the bell will go to Father Delemer to be used for whatever he feels would be most valuable to his people. It will take a long time to hear from him, but as soon as I am sure the bell is going to him, I shall ask the manufacturer to send him word.

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I have a communication from Dr. John M. Dorsey, professor of psychiatry at the Wayne University School of Medicine, who sends me some literature from the Cornelian Corner in Detroit. Apparently my reference to psychiatry being used nowadays to solve the difficulties of small children inspired him to let me know about the work they are doing in Detroit.

I am deeply interested in some of the facts which they have published. Of importance to us all is the information that, during the war, 41 percent of the inductees from the city, and 51 percent of the inductees from the rural areas, were found unsuitable for military service. "An appreciable percentage of this unsuitability stemmed in personality disorders which had their origin in early childhood. In addition, at one time during the hostilities, when combat infantrymen were in dire demand, 1,000 persons a day were being discharged from the military because emotional disorders rendered them unserviceable."

One of the articles states that two groups of 6-year-old children were analyzed. Half of them had spent the greater part of their infancy in institutions and the rest in boarding homes. Those who had been institutions showed a much higher percentage "of overtly anxious and aggressive behavior." Evidently children suffer when they lack "mothering."

As one reads the various articles, it would seem as though caring for children and running a home was a full-time job and that, during the years of childhood, that should be the first consideration in the planning of family life. I hope that those who are really interested in increasing the stability of our nation will read some of the literature available from this source.

E. R.
TMs, AERP, FDRL