December 15, 1941
SEATTLE—We had a full meeting of the state and local defense councils and heads of various other organizations in Portland on Friday afternoon. Oregon has a coordinator for defense work and he and the Governor assured me that they actually have more plans in operation and functioning than has seemed to be the case in some other places. Here also the Red Cross seems well organized and active, and the medical profession seems to be prepared for emergency work. Everywhere they say the same thing, that they need more supplies to meet a real disaster.
I had a very good opportunity to talk to the Governor and the coordinator of defense activities on the train for an hour before we reached Portland, and went to the meeting.
I think it is going to be necessary for the army and civilian defense officials in these northwestern areas to work more closely together. The two activities are so closely connected it is almost impossible to separate them at many points.
At four-fifteen we were back on the train and we reached Seattle a little after ten p.m. It was good to see my daughter and son-in-law at the station, and this is the first chance I have had to see their home which they bought last summer. It is a low, rather rambling house, down by the lake with nice trees and an orchard. We had hardly been home a few minutes when our eldest grandchild, Eleanor, came in from her first formal dancing party, wearing her first real evening dress. Life for the young must go on even though Seattle is perhaps the nearest point on this coast to Japan!
Much to our surprise yesterday morning, Johnny, aged two and a half, greeted me as though he really knew me and promptly demanded: "Where's Tommy?" so he evidently connects the two of us!
Anna, John, and I, with Mr. Neustadt and Mr. Davis from the regional office of the D.H. & W Administration, drove over to Tacoma right after breakfast for a local defense council meeting there. The Mayor, Mr. Cain, is a young and capable man, and the medical work seems to be well organized and much of the other defense work is at least begun. The volunteer bureau is being established, air raid wardens are being trained, though not yet in large enough numbers. The county was also represented at the meeting and I am glad to see the realization that county and city must work together.
We had a quiet afternoon and evening together and this morning we are going down for meetings of the Seattle state and local defense councils.