OCTOBER 10, 1940
NEW YORK, Wednesday—An imposing number of gentlemen met me at my apartment soon after we reached New York City yesterday morning. I hope they are going to accomplish something which will be of real assistance to the various semi-rural sections of the country. The people in these sections, while they can raise a certain amount of food for themselves, need other occupations to bring their incomes up to a decent level of existence.
I started late for a luncheon appointment uptown and encountered such a traffic block on Fifth Avenue that I finally stepped out of the taxi and walked a little way, and took a taxi again where I thought the way looked clear. The driver told me with some amusement that it was Mr. Willkie's parade blocking the street. By that time I was so late that I hardly listened to what he had to say. Seeing that I was really concerned about the time, he thought up the quickest possible way to reach my destination and took me down the ramp to 45th Street and thus finally to my restaurant.
After lunch I saw Miss Rosamond Chapin, who told me a most interesting story of her efforts to have opera produced in this country in the English language. This seems to me a sensible idea, for if the same operas are produced in German, French and Italian; I cannot see why, if the translation is good, we should not have opera in English and bring it within the range of understanding and appreciation of a good many more people. You cannot imagine a German audience without opera in German. That is one reason why they enjoy it so much, because it is part of their daily lives.
I carried home Miss Chapin's translation of "The Magic Flute" to read. I feel sure that there must be people in this country interested in her idea to promote American artists here, since they can no longer go abroad to gain their reputations and must, therefore, be recognized as artists by us.
I saw a good many people in Democratic headquarters and then went to see Miss Minna Citron's murals, which are being exhibited in the Art League Building. They will be placed in the post office in Newport, Tenn., and I think will be a notable addition.
By this time in the afternoon, I had more or less caught up with myself, and I arrived on time at the tea given by the Business and Professional Women. After spending an hour with them, I returned home to dress and dine and go with Mrs. Henry Morgenthau Jr., and Miss Thompson to see Mr. Maxwell Anderson's new play: "Journey To Jerusalem." The settings for this play are very beautiful and I particularly enjoyed the first act. The whole play seems to me interesting and well worth seeing.
The busy round is going on today, and this afternoon we go back to Hyde Park.