OCTOBER 20, 1956
NEW YORK—We had some rather good campaign meetings in Cleveland. A Democratic rally was held at 4 p.m. following a lunch, with a reception after the rally.
Then we proceeded to Minneapolis, Minn. There I tried to help the Democrats get a little publicity by seeing a reporter as soon as our plane landed. Strange as it may seem, the Democrats do not think they are getting equal publicity with the Republicans in the newspapers, but I am not sure that my giving a single reporter an interview at a late hour of the night was very valuable publicity for the party!
At 8:30 the next morning, however, we had a press conference that I think helped the Democrats a little, and at 9 o'clock we had breakfast with a large group, mostly women but including a few men. Then we started on a day of barnstorming by automobile.
We could not have had a more beautiful day and the Governor's wife, Mrs. Orville Freeman, and I both reveled in the sunshine, the good, black earth of the ploughed fields and what colors of gold and red that remained on the trees.
There is one thing I noticed, however, in driving through that countryside that bothers me greatly. There has been no encouragement on the part of the Federal Government to induce the farmer to preserve his woodlots and borders of trees along his fields. As a result, they have practically died out.
When I remember that even in areas with as much water as in Minnesota, the topsoil can blow off where there are no trees to break the wind and that the water table can sink if you cut down trees, I have a feeling that the Federal Government has not done a good conservation job in this area.
The state has been trying to do a little but does not have sufficient funds. This fundamental care of our land and water supplies should be the concern of our Federal Government.
Our tour took us through Republican territory, but those with me were delighted with the size of our audiences. We had a big luncheon at Mankato Teachers College. We stopped and spoke at several small places, had a big afternoon rally, and at Albert Lea in the evening attended a dinner of some 500 or 600 people, about evenly distributed between farmers and city residents.
Albert Lea has done a good job of attracting industry and it seemed a thriving city. Most of the farms are one-family properties, and the city depends upon farm prosperity. So there is genuine concern about the cost of living and the prices farmers are getting for their produce.
We spent the night in Rochester, Minn., and the next morning I attended a breakfast for both men and women before taking a plane to Chicago and then on to New York.