My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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When you are not accustomed to getting up at a quarter past six it seems a very early hour! However, when you know that you must get somehow or other, you always remember to wake and I made a seven-thirty a.m. train for Philadelphia this morning very comfortably. The streets were so deserted that it took no time to reach the station and it hardly seemed natural to see so little traffic. Only one lady came and asked for an autograph for her small boy before I got out at the North Philadelphia station, but while I sat in the station master's little office on the platform knitting as I waited for my husband, I felt like a bird in a cage! I've always thought cages should have a protected spot in case the bird was shy and wanted to be out of sight. Below me in the street, I saw my husband's car and the secret service car waiting and gradually a group of people collected. Finally a very beautiful guard regiment on horse back, which was formed in 1774 and which has escorted every President who ever visited Philadelphia from George Washington's day on, was lined up in the street. The Governor and his aides, the Mayor and the President of the University soon appeared and after a few minutes chat, we went to the platform where my husband's train was coming in. He had started a little earlier even than I had, but seemed very cheerful when we met and together with the Governor and the Mayor we got into the car and drove to the University.

The founder of Temple University was apparently not a great lawyer and when he became a minister he was not a great orator, and had no very great fortune, and yet people flocked in hordes to hear him preach. He founded a great university. He never said "I will do something," and did nothing. He took every opportunity that came his way to be helpful. I wonder if more of us did that every day, what would happen to the world?

We lunched on the train as all of us had breakfast so early. I dropped off in New York to proceed to Hyde Park where my husband will arrive tomorrow morning, after dining in Boston tonight with our two youngest sons.


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About this document

My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt, February 24, 1936

Roosevelt, Eleanor, 1884-1962
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Digital edition created by The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers Project The George Washington University 312 Academic Building 2100 Foxhall Road, NW Washington, DC 20007

  • Brick, Christopher (Editor)
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  • Regenhardt, Christy (Associate Editor)
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  • Black, Allida M. (Editor)
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  • Binker, Mary Jo (Associate Editor)
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  • Alhambra, Christopher C. (Electronic Text Editor)
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Digital edition published 2008, 2017 by
The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers Project

Available under licence from the Estate of Anna Eleanor Roosevelt.

Published with permission from the Estate of Anna Eleanor Roosevelt.

MEP edition publlished on 2008-06-30

TEI-P5 edition published on 2017-04-28

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Transcription created from a photocopy of a draft version of a My Day column instance archived at the Franklin D. Roosevelt Library. My Day column draft dated February 23, 1936, FDR Library, Hyde Park, NY
TMsd, 23 February 1936, AERP, FDRL