My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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WASHINGTON—Mrs. Edward Young of the New York State Home Bureau Federation came into see me and to ask a number of questions about the Associated Rural Women of the World meetings before breakfast this morning. She and Mrs. Bridgen, also of the New York State Home Bureau Federation, and I had breakfast together on the South Porch. It was very peaceful and I remarked that no matter how bad the rest of the day might be, this was a quiet moment and I could almost forget that I had spent the night on the train. With a twinkle, Mrs. Bridgen said: "I see you like contrasts."

At ten o'clock the President came in from his trip on the River, looking very well indeed and much rested. At ten-thirty, having caught up with a few housekeeping details, I had a press conference. A brief one as the girls were as anxious to get away as I was, for Washington is overrun by farm women and people interested in rural life. Delegates from forty foreign countries are here, Canada having sent a large delegation as well as England, and our own United States is represented by six thousand odd from every part of the country.

I must say that I felt a sense of pride when I went into Constitution Hall which is so rarely filled and found it packed both in the orchestra and up to the roof at noon today. I remember the sceptics, mostly gentlemen to be sure, telling me that we would have only a handful of women, but as the Secretary of Agriculture said: "Farm women are on the move." The farm woman knows when she thinks something is worthwhile doing and evidently a large number have decided that this is worth doing.

The meeting adjourned at one-thirty and at three-thirty I was down on the lawn greeting the foreign delegates and the heads of state organizations. Then I went up on the South Porch where some of the Ambassadors and Cabinet were gathered, and where the President spoke to the assembled women. Afterwards I went back and shook hands with as many as I could reach in a walk around the lawn.

I hope to see them often again in the course of the next few days at their meetings. It certainly was a pleasure to have them here and to get a chance to even say a word to so many of them this afternoon.

TMsd 1 June 1936, AERP, FDRL