AUGUST 14, 1956
CHICAGO—Mayor Robert F. Wagner of New York set a good example to all the parents of Chicago and other areas when he and Mrs. Wagner got the Salk anti-polio injections in preparation for their trip to Chicago. I hope it will induce other people to have their children inoculated as soon as possible.
I was glad I was not in Chicago listening to all the rumors and noting the feeling of nervousness which apparently seemed to exist as the politicians of the Democratic National Convention waited to hear which nominee former President Harry S. Truman would choose to back.
I felt quite sure that he would weigh in his own mind what he thought best for the country and, secondly, what he thought best for the party. There, of course, can be many different opinions and I was glad, at least, that President Truman, according to all accounts, was having fun in keeping everyone on the anxious seat.
There was a marvelous picture in the New York Herald Tribune on Saturday of Governor Averell Harriman trying on an Indian chief's bonnet and another of Adlai Stevenson being shaded by a colorful umbrella, carried by a lovely lady and accompanied by several others admiringly walking beside him. What strange things candidates have to do!
Ever since I first began to go to political conventions I have wondered at the effect of the crowds' contagion which makes nearly everybody act somewhat out of character!
Saturday was my last day in Hyde Park and Dr. and Mrs. Michael Heidelberger had spent two days with me and left that afternoon. The Roosevelt Home Club held its annual card party on my picnic grounds and I went out to say a few words of welcome before they left.
Our neighbor, Mrs. Harrity, had lunch with us. She has just come back from Europe and was full of talk about her travels. She will shortly be going back on business, to attend an international meeting in Venice. I think she, like her husband, enjoys these jaunts, though like every other American, she insists that her greatest interest is in getting home.
Having known all summer that I would be leaving for Europe in August, I put off until Saturday cleaning out some files in Hyde Park, N.Y., which I've been meaning to do for at least a year! They go over to the Memorial Library on loan and the library will gradually decide if there is anything that seems worth keeping or whether most of them will be destroyed. But it takes the spur of actually leaving to make one do these things.
I left Hyde Park after an early dinner and reached New York about 10:30 p.m. On Sunday morning I took an 8 o'clock plane to Chicago where I now am for a brief two days. I will write you of my impressions here when I get back tomorrow.