My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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NEW YORK—I belong to the Adirondack Mountain Club because I have always been interested in that mountainous part of New York State. And I firmly believe the state should keep that area untouched by too much "modern progress."

I now hear through my club that there will be an amendment voted on in November, called the Northway Amendment, which in the opinion of the club is one of the "most dangerous threats to the forest preserve which has been presented to us in many years."

My husband always took a great interest in conservation and, because of that, I came to know a little about the value of preserving our trees and our areas for wildlife. This Northway Amendment proposes a roadway right through some of the most beautiful stands of pine trees in the Adirondacks.

There is an alternative Northway proposal, which would go through the Champlain Valley, where a first-class highway is needed because of the obsolete condition of roads in that area. Also, this road would serve a larger, year-round population and a larger industrial population and would not pass through any forest preserve land. In addition, winter weather is less severe in the valley region, and such a Northway through this area, together with U.S. Route 9, would make a very good North-South loop.

If the Adirondack Northway proposed in the amendment that we will vote on this November goes through, it would closely parallel Route 9 and would be a wasteful duplication. It would damage much of the recreational value of the region and cut in on the fishing and wild life areas, paralleling as it would for approximately 45 miles the Schroon River.

Putting through a concrete highway would damage not just the land taken for the roads, but all the neighboring areas. So, I hope that those who care to preserve the Adirondacks will vote down the Northway Amendment and work toward the alternate Champlain Northway.

There are now 40 or more organizations interested in conservation throughout the state and nation that join the Adirondack Mountain Club in protesting the Northway Amendment, and it is on this recommondation that I base my own vote to oppose it and urge the Champlain Valley route.

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One particularly nice thing that happened to me on my birthday last Sunday was a visit from a social worker and several small boys from Wiltwyck School. They brought me some lovely flowers, but, even better than that, they presented time with a drawing made by one of the boys and signed by over 90 of them, wishing me a happy birthday.

The boys who came were all between eight and 12 years old. They were all much excited about the success of their drum band, and they told me the band members could not come with them because they were recording that day. I asked if the band would accept invitations and play for pay and thus make money for the boys' new home, and I was told that the band would go anywhere it was asked to go!

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I am particularly heartened to see that in New York City voting registration is particularly high this year. I hope this means that we are waking from the lethargy of the past few years and are feeling more anxious to enter into government situations and fight for the things we really believe in and want.

E.R.
TMs, AERP, FDRL