JULY 12, 1941
EASTPORT, Maine, Friday—While at Sebasco Lodge yesterday, I was handed a letter telling me about the work done in Sebasco Village by Albert Bailey of West Town, Pennsylvania. The economic condition of the lobstermen, many of whom earn only about $400 cash a year, is on a par with some of our other low income localities, only theirs is a cold and long winter which requires more cash income. Nearly every fisherman up and down the coast wrings a very precarious livelihood from the sea.
It is a dangerous life as well, but there is something you do not get away from easily in the hold of the sea. Even making money, while it is desperately important because you have to live, isn't the most important thing in life. What is being done in Sebasco Village, should be done in every village up and down the coast. Mr. Bailey has had a work camp there and helped the people to help themselves.
They now raise vegetables and can them. The women have a knitting industry, and a housing project is under way which helps the people to build three-room houses for $250 paid in monthly installments. They have started a credit union and a small cooperative store. Isn't it good to know that this is going on in even one place? The good seed is sown and will surely spread.
We reached Campobello very comfortably, stopping to eat our lunch by the wayside and reaching my mother-in-law's house before four-thirty. As we were driving the last part of the way, my mother-in-law kept saying to me: "There is something in the air here which no other air has. I feel better already." I really believe that the trip has done her good.
I went over soon after arrival to see the group of students in our own house. I must say it is very exciting to be with a lot of young people who are having a good time, working together and playing together. I feel there is for most of them at least, a keen desire to open up new vistas, better to understand things they had not understood before, and to work out solutions for problems no matter how difficult they may seem. Dr. Neilson says they never weary, and I suppose that is why youth is so important to us. They have the energy and staying power which this sorely troubled world requires.
The Board of Trade of Campobello Island gave a dance last night and we all went down to the hall at eight-thirty. The NYA band came over from Quoddy Village to play and everyone seemed to enjoy it. Mr. Aubrey Williams and Dr. Floyd Reeves are here for a night or two with us. This morning I expect to go over with Mr. Williams to Quoddy and lunch there with the 850 or more boys, and then return to listen to our small group here during their afternoon lecture and discussion period.