JUNE 5, 1951
HYDE PARK, Monday—My weekend here was quite busy. Early Saturday morning I started off with a photographer who wanted to get pictures of the house and Fala. Then at 10 o'clock a man from Poughkeepsie, who is writing a dissertation on Harry Hopkins for his doctor's degree at the University of Illinois, spent about three-quarters of an hour with me. Fortunately, I could answer most of his questions.
After that my cousin, Mrs. W. Forbes Morgan, and I started off in the station wagon for a visit to the Rhinebeck Hospital, which is our Upper Dutchess County hospital, for which my husband laid the cornerstone in 1929 while he was governor. The Thompson Trust has largely aided in the development of this hospital. This trust was left to aid indigent salesgirls and seamstresses in Rhinebeck, N.Y., and Brattleboro, Vt. Because the number of such cases is somewhat limited, the overseers of the fund got court permission to help in the public health field, so the hospital has largely owed its growth to this fund.
Mr. Thompson, who was born in 1798, married a lady who was 24 years younger than he. She outlived him by many years and, according to the most careful research done on her, she must have been a remarkable person. As long as the 1890s she tried to establish a league of nations. From what the trustees told me about her I am sure she would have been interested to see what the trust fund is doing for the health of the people of this part of the country. Just now the hospital is being enlarged and more adequately equipped. A nurses' home has been established outside of the hospital proper, which enables the nurses to get out of the hospital atmosphere for at least part of the day.
I had visited the hospital before but I had never gone over it thoroughly until last Saturday. I had the opportunity then because I was speaking at the annual dinner that evening. I was amply rewarded by my visit and happy to know that we have such a good hospital nearby.
On the way back I stopped at the Staatsburgh School to see the annual exhibition of paintings by Dutchess County artists. Olin Dows had lent one of his original drawings from his book on Hyde Park and there were several other very good small canvases. The Girl Scouts were selling corsages to aid their fund, and a whole series of events was going on in the village. As the school year draws to its end, this is the pattern all over our county.
Two charming Vassar girls came to lunch with me and then I was off again. This time I took my cousin to see Franklin Jr.'s home, which she had never visited, and to get a glimpse of my daughter-in-law, Susan. Franklin Jr. was plowing in the field where they were sowing the last of the oats and, of course, we could not hope to interrupt that important piece of work.
I was home to read to the assembled children from the "Just So" stories and then off to Rhinebeck for the hospital dinner.
Thus ended a quiet country day!