DECEMBER 22, 1958
NEW YORK—On Friday I had the pleasure of having Mr. Carlton Smith and his wife lunch with me. He is just back from another trip to Russia, and I am always eager to hear new impressions from people returning from that country.
In the evening I went to dinner to meet General Omar Bradley. All of my boys who served under General Bradley have the greatest respect for him, and it was a great pleasure for me to see him again.
On Saturday morning I went to Hyde Park for last-minute Christmas preparations. In the afternoon I had my usual party for the people who used to be employees of my husband and my mother-in-law on the old place in Hyde Park, as well as those who work for John and me today. I always enjoy this party.
The first of the family group who are spending the Christmas holidays with me in Hyde Park arrived on Sunday in time for lunch. They consisted of my niece, Mrs. Eleanor Elliott, and her four children. The two younger ones will stay quietly in the country, but I suspect the older boys will spend just about as much time in New York as in Hyde Park. But all the family will be there for Christmas; and since this is the first time that the Elliotts have joined us at this season we are going to be a really big Christmas party.
I returned to New York on Sunday afternoon in order to be with my old friends, Miss Esther Lape and Dr. Helen Gavin, for the evening.
I have just seen a copy of Arthur Schlessinger's new book, "The Coming of the New Deal," which will be published in January. Excerpts from the book are appearing in the January issue of Esquire. Those who read the excerpts, I am sure, will want to follow up by reading the book. Even from a quick look through the book, I know that it will be fascinating material for anyone interested in that period of his story leading up to the early Thirties and to the New Deal.
I wonder if many of us realize that during 1959 the American Red Cross will mark the 50th anniversary of its nursing services as a national program. For half a century, in war and peace, they have provided enrolled Red Cross nurses who have followed in the steps of Florence Nightingale and Clara Barton to give nursing service in time of disaster or in periods of local or national emergency. Many of these nurses who volunteer for Red Cross work serve in the Red Cross blood program and provide home nursing and volunteer nurses aid instruction as part of their service to their communities.
The actual date this program began as a national program was May 5, 1909, but the 50th anniversary will be observed during the entire year of 1959. It will make us more aware of the services rendered by the Red Cross and by the nurses themselves.