JUNE 10, 1950
STOCKHOLM, Sweden, Friday—A very pleasant flight from Oslo to Stockholm. Farms, woods and lakes alternating below us as we flew along. A tail wind brought us in ahead of time and we were met by our Charge d'Affaires Mr. Cumming, Mrs. Cumming and the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Osten Unden, and several others in the reception group. We went straight to the Grand Hotel where we are staying. The board members of the Women's Business and Professional Organization invited Miss Thompson and me to an informal and very pleasant lunch. This was followed by the usual Press Conference with a great number of photographers and a great many press representatives. Rather few questions were asked, however, and those that were referred to my talk last evening on the Human Rights Commission.
At three-thirty we drove with our Charge d'Affaires and Mrs. Cumming out to Drottningholm, the summer palace of the King. The King was kind enough to see me for a few minutes, and as large a number of photographers as I have seen anywhere in the United States, came in to photograph us together. I was particularly glad to have this opportunity to thank King Gustaf himself for giving me the Prince Carl Medal last winter.
Princess Sibylla, after giving us tea, accompanied us on a tour of the rooms on the lower floor of the palace. This was the first time Elliott's children have had an opportunity of seeing rooms, portraits and tapestries that are connected with historical events. They were very interested. It was explained to us that the living apartments have smaller rooms, with very charming paintings and are much pleasanter than the formal rooms which we walked through. I was also told that the kitchen is situated in one of the wings. This means that the food has to be carried across the courtyard and brought up on a dumb-waiter to the dining room in the central building. In a much smaller way that was what they did in Williamsburg, Virginia and in Mt. Vernon in our early days. Inevitably this presents a problem when serving hot meals particularly in the winter months, though now they probably have thermos containers which were lacking in the old days. We were then shown the second floor and later drove home to prepare for our evening meeting.
The country is picturesque with water on every side. Stockholm seems to have a great number of bridges and also a great many very charming houses and gardens in the outskirts. I am struck by the fact that these Scandinavian cities seem to have no slums and no ugly approaches, such as you would see in approaching one of our big cities. The country looks clean and tidy, the cities are clean and tidy. And yet they told me in Oslo that there are many poorer homes without bathrooms, or any of the facilities to which we are accustomed in the United States. Perhaps when a city is celebrating its 900th Anniversary as Oslo is doing, you have reached the point where cleanliness and tidiness are essential, because the results of carelessness would probably be very disastrous.