JANUARY 26, 1939
WASHINGTON, Wednesday—The Inter-Departmental Reception took place last night. The Cabinet meets us in the family dining room before all receptions and forms in line to walk behind us. As a rule they stay in the Red Room to greet the guests after they have passed us, but at this particular reception they all solmenly walk into the Green Room and come past us again two minutes after their first reception, supposedly leading their "flocks" behind them. These flocks, however, come straggling in much later and we solemnly shake hands and bow again to the same members of our official family whom we have previously welcomed!
Mr. and Mrs. George Carlin are staying with us. Mrs. Charles Hamlin is with us while she goes through the accumulation of belongings in a storage warehouse. The sad thing about giving up a home is having to part with so many things which, whether shabby or not, have become a part of one's life. The Thrift Shop and the orphanage and many other groups I am sure are deeply grateful for Mrs. Hamlin's generosity, for it must be hard to part with so many things.
This morning I visited one of the WPA household training projects for colored girls in the District of Columbia. I have seen these projects all over the United States, but I think this one is particularly important here, where there are so few factories and therefore very little employment for colored women outside of domestic service.
In many other places these projects serve another purpose. They afford an opportunity for employers, who serve as sponsor or on an advisory committee, to observe the work planned in the practice house and to learn what the conditions should be in their homes. I wish that the District of Columbia could have a model project which could serve as a standard for other projects throughout the country.
After my brief visit, I went to the Children's Hospital, where photographs are usually taken during the drive for infantile paralysis funds. One little girl was running all over the room on crutches. When I asked her if she could walk without them she said: "Of course I can, but the doctor doesn't want me to." She had evidently become so proficient it didn't bother her at all. One picture will show an unhappy young miss having her leg massaged. She really was only hurt in her feelings, for she thought she was going home, and then off came her shoe and sock for the benefit of the photographers and tears followed.
The Junior League girl doing the massage told me she was a volunteer for four hours a week and had been doing this work for two years and loved it. This is the kind of work which the Junior League does so well and which is fine educational work for its members.