The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers, Digital Edition > My Day
My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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SEATTLE, Saturday—This little matter of difference in time means that I have to file my column this morning before I leave Seattle, which I am doing by air at 10:00 am. I hope to reach San Francisco at 4:50, but that would be too late to make my deadline in New York. I am praying for good weather all the way on this trip, for I must keep to my schedule and be home by Tuesday, the eighth. I don't suppose that one vote would make much difference, but for my own satisfaction I like to cast my vote in New York State for the candidates I believe in and whom I look upon as friends—Governor Lehman, Senators Wagner and Mead and Congressman-At-Large Caroline O'Day. There are others on the ticket, of course, but these are the ones about whom I have a really personal feeling.

Letters and telegrams have come to me in quantity, as usual, since I have been here. All kinds of people are inspired to write me when they hear that I am somewhere near and I only wish that it was possible to accede to all of the requests that are made. I did a little mental arithmetic this morning and found that if I said "yes" to the requests that came to me just in this morning's mail, I would need $2000 before night to send out to various people.

I would like to help them all but I think it will have to be done in some other way, for at this rate it would take a millionaire many times over to meet the demands and I am not a millionaire, no matter how hard I work. It may be possible, however, to help in some cases, and though it takes a little more trouble and a little more time, I think perhaps there are more constructive ways of doing things than simply sending people the money which they think they need today, but which undoubtedly they will need over and over again in the future.

I have been talking again about the unemployment census report made by Mr. Biggers as Chairman of the Committee, and I think perhaps we ought all to have more clearly before us just what the census attempted to do. The law authorized an unemployment census "to provide information concerning the numbers, classes and geographical distribution of persons, partly employed and unemployed to aid in the formulation of a program for reemployment, social security and unemployment relief." This was an effort to get at the facts, but could in no way explain the reason for these facts. As I talk it over and read the letters which come to me from all parts of this country, I realize that this census is most important. Without it, we would not be finding the reason for the facts disclosed.

My letters indicate that there are many reasons for some of the things which may seem difficult to understand. I picked out the fact of the increased percentage of unemployment among women, because I was afraid that such a fact unexplained might lead people to look askance at employing women, when quite evidently many of them are finding it more necessary than ever to obtain work at the present time. My letters here have emphasized this thought, for several of them come from women whose husbands are out of work and who need to find some way of helping the family budget, though they have not been in the labor market for some years past.

Beautiful weather yesterday. I look forward to my flight this morning, which is over wooded, mountainous country for part of the way. I wish we could catch a glimpse of Crater Lake, the bluest lake that I know in the world, but I don't think we go over it. However, I'll tell you tomorrow.


(Copyright, 1938, by United Feature Syndicate, Inc.)

Names and Terms Mentioned or Referenced

  • Seattle (Wash., United States) [ index ]

About this document

My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt, November 7, 1938

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

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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 June 30, 2008.

TEI-P5 edition published on April 28, 2017.

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Transcription created from a photocopy of a UFS wire copy of a My Day column instance archived at the Franklin D. Roosevelt Library.