JANUARY 20, 1956
NEW YORK—I must tell you about my final day of my recent Western trip so that the record will be complete. This was in Dallas, where I went to speak for the Americans for Democratic Action Roosevelt Dinner.
It was a beautiful day and since Miss Maureen Corr, my secretary, had gone on through to New York from San Antonio, I was delighted to be greeted by a charming young man whom I had met at my son's ranch last summer and who took lunch with me.
Later in the afternoon I met with some Democratic women's groups and then went to the press club for a conference. It always seems strange to find myself in an environment where everybody announces that he is a Democrat. Even though there may be differences among them, they are all Democrats. In Dutchess County, New York, my neighbors, for the most part, are Republicans!
The dinner in the evening was a huge affair, with 1,500 people attending. I was told there probably would be no reports of the event in the papers, since the main Dallas paper does not like ADA nor the particular brand of Democrats who belong to ADA in that city.
I was very much interested in the fact that during the dinner some scrolls of merit were awarded to members of different groups who have worked very hard to try to have poll taxes paid so that people can vote. To my surprise one or two of the people who came up to receive these scrolls were colored, showing that in Texas, at least, the colored people are going to be allowed to vote.
I thought this dinner was very dramatically arranged. At one point my husband's voice was heard spreading throughout the very large hall and as they played records of different speeches by him, someone would come to the podium and tie in his speech with something that was happening today.
If all the people present at the dinner joined the Dallas ADA, they must have gained a great number of members, and I hope they also received some subscriptions.
When the dinner came to a close I was driven to the airport and made my plane for New York very comfortably. Good weather was with us and we landed exactly on time. I did not have time, however, to really take in the amount of mail that waited on my desk.
That same morning on arriving in New York I caught the 10 o'clock train to Philadelphia, and this gave me a chance to catch a little extra sleep before arriving there.
I went in for a few minutes to a meeting of the Women's Group of the American Jewish Congress and then proceeded to the Franklin Institute where Mayor Richardson Dilworth presented me with the City of Philadelphia Franklin Medal. This award was made at a lunch in the beautiful rotunda where Benjamin Franklin's statue looked down on us all.
Sir Winston Churchill, the other recipient of the medal, has just received his in London in the house where Franklin lived when he went to London on his various missions. It is a beautiful medal and I will, of course, give it at once to the library at Hyde Park.
I was also given a publication, called "Mr. Franklin," which was just put out by the Yale University Press as part of its project to publish all of Benjamin Franklin's correspondence. This small volume is just a few selected letters showing his humor, his kindness, his ability to be sharp when necessary, and his great versatility. I read it all the way back on the train to New York and enjoyed it immensely.