My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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NEW YORK—Have you ever been to Sturbridge, Mass.?

Last week Clark Eichelberger, Miss Patricia Baillargeon and I got off the train at Hartford, Conn. There I joined Mrs. Beatrice Auerbach and together we all proceeded in two separate cars to Sturbridge, which had been chosen as the most convenient place to hold the Massachusetts state convention of the American Association for the United Nations.

It was dark when we reached our destination, but I had been reading a booklet about that area and so I could recognize some of the landmarks as we drove in. Historically, this is an interesting village, just across the line from Connecticut and within easy reach of Boston and Worcester and any number of villages in the vicinity.

What they call Old Sturbridge is a collection of old buildings brought there to recreate a village and show the New England life of a part of the 18th and early 19th Centuries. It has been delightfully done and is being administered in a way which makes it an interesting and agreeable place to live.

The countryside is charming, and while on this occasion I had to devote myself to working for the AAUN I certainly hope that next summer when we are at Hyde Park we can organize an excursion to take the children to visit Sturbridge, where we will see a blacksmith's shop, churches, houses and a general store such as our ancestors in New England lived in.

I have long meant also to organize an excursion to Cooperstown, N.Y., where Fred Rath, who was once in Hyde Park, runs a museum similar to the one at Sturbridge, though it is created in a different atmosphere and in a different area of the country.

We had a press conference in the "Public House," which is in the newer part of Sturbridge but nevertheless an old house done over. We stayed the night there but went over to dine in the "Old Tavern" in the old village.

After dinner in the high school, which serves five towns and has an auditorium which is rented for public functions, a very good audience came to this first meeting organized by the State Association for the AAUN.

The next morning more people began to arrive. They were heads of different organizations or influential persons in various communities who have an interest in forming a chapter of the AAUN to increase the knowledge of the people in their communities about the U.N.

There were about 50 persons, and right up to the moment we had to leave for a train back to New York we were busy discussing why we wanted an organization and how an organization should function.

The charm of the old New England village is still with me as I write this column, and I hope some others will feel as I do, for I wanted to enjoy again this atmosphere with some of my friends and am looking forward to doing it next summer. Mr. and Mrs. Richard Showman, who manage the old village, are a delightful couple and are certainly doing a very interesting piece of work.

E.R.
TMs, AERP, FDRL