NOVEMBER 9, 1953
HYDE PARK, Sunday—Thursday in Boston was a busy day, but I enjoyed the meeting in the Fogg Museum's beautiful courtyard and wished that I had the time to see a little of the wonderful collection. I have been promised a private tour if I ever can plan for the time when I am next in Boston. I dined with Mr. and Mrs. John Cutter and some of their friends at the Club of Odd Volumes, a wonderful old Boston house filled with many treasures. It was just like being in one's own home, for they had it all to themselves. Mr. Cutter reminded me that my husband had been a member, and I am sure he always enjoyed his membership.
At 11:00 I took the train to Montreal, where I was to receive the degree of Doctor of Laws from McGill University. I was greeted in the morning by Professors Hall and Commons, who watched over me all day. After a second breakfast in the New Windsor Hotel, a press conference, a recording and a few minutes with some ladies representing Youth Aliyah, we drove to MacDonald College, which is part of McGill University and includes the three colleges of Agriculture, Teacher Training and Home Economics.
I lunched with Dean Britain at the faculty club. It was a very pleasant small party, after which the dean drove me around to see the different buildings and apartments. We finally went to visit what is his joy and pride—a thousand acres that have been acquired for forestry. Here he is planting every kind of tree that can be grown in Canada. He is doing real tree landscaping, leaving vistas here and there, and using the area also as a bird sanctuary. He is particularly interested in helping farmers to develop a wood lot. Gradually he is clearing one section of beech woods. They look beautiful now and are being judiciously cut so that the trees will grow to their maximum size. Every kind of fir, spruce and evergreen is to be found, and hardwoods and softwoods of every kind. He told me they had a big harvest from their sugar maples, and then he pointed out the area of red maples which he had planted for color.
The dean has a little building which he calls his chalet, where he spends every Saturday night. This is really the center of the forest, and from here he does his directing. To this chalet, also, he brings groups of students for meetings, particularly when they have difficult problems to solve. There is a wonderful fireplace, with great big logs that throw tremendous heat out into the room. As they sit around the open fire on blankets, everyone begins to work better together. Sometimes they come just to enjoy themselves. They have dinner, which they cook themselves, and sit before the fire and sing. This would be a good memory in the life of any boy or girl. They tell me the dean, himself, is a wonderful raconteur, and what could make an evening pleasanter than that?
In the afternoon the students held a reception for me. At eight o'clock I gave the memorial address and received the degree of Doctor of Laws. At 10:20 I caught the train back to Poughkeepsie, stepping off at six in the morning into a world of snow.