My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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CHICAGO, Wednesday—We left Portland, Ore., Tuesday evening earlier than we had intended because our trip up the coast had seemed to me so uncertain that I did not dare take the risk of the close connections which had been planned for us in going from Chicago to Ann Arbor, Mich.

We had two delightful days in Portland, however, from the point of view of seeing my family and a few old friends. The only outside activity that I engaged in on Monday was a sort of "meet the press" recording at the Press Club before a sizable audience. The two daily Portland newspapers, The Oregonian and The Journal, through their representatives, asked me questions on a variety of subjects.

The first question, however, was purely personal and I can tell you what it was: "How do you like your great-grandson?"

The longer I was with Nicholas Delano Seagraves the more I appreciated his sunny disposition. I have never seen a happier child. He smiles when he wakes in the morning and he smiles when he is put to bed at night. He actually chuckles and laughs when you play with him, and his bath is pure joy to him and, therefore, he is a pure joy to watch. He is well fed, healthy and contented, secure that all the world loves him. What better start could any child have in life?

The Northwest had another snowstorm Monday evening. It was very light, but the cold must have made the roads slippery. Sistie, my granddaughter, and her husband had invited their friends in for an informal get-together for Sunday afternoon but it had to be put off until Monday night because I arrived so late. She assured us all that the cakes would be stale, but everyone seemed to enjoy them very much. And the hot spiced cider, the smell of which we enjoyed most of the afternoon in the house, seemed just the right thing in view of the snowy weather.

I was happy to meet some of the Democrats in the city, some of the people with whom my grandson works at the Bonneville Dam, and some of their friends who have been so kind and cooperative.

The young people have bought an old house in a delightful neighborhood and are doing all the work on it with their own hands. My grandson tells me that by the end of next summer there will be great improvement achieved, and I believe it when I see what already has been done.

The West is certainly a good place for young people to start life together. I was delighted when one of my granddaughter's neighbors, who with his wife has been more than kind to this young couple, told me Monday night that he felt Van Seagraves had the knack of asking questions and then going ahead and undertaking almost any job with his own hands. I am quite convinced that in doing so he undoubtedly gets the cooperative help of many of his neighbors and he learns as he works.

Tuesday afternoon I went to see some other young friends of mine, Mr. and Mrs. Robert W. Robinson, who also have acquired a home on which they did a good deal of work themselves. I was glad that the roads were passable so that we could get to them for a short time and see what improvements they had made and get a glimpse of their two children.

It seems to me that the cooperative spirit is more in evidence in the West than elsewhere. For instance, several communities in the vicinity of Portland are joining together in an effort to raise funds to build a memorial hospital in Newberg. This will serve all the cooperating communities, will be built by public subscription, and will be owned by a non-profit, tax-exempt organization, membership in which is open to subscribers. Facilities of the hospital will be available to all people regardless of race, color, creed or economic condition. This effort shows a realization on the part of the people that adequate health facilities must be available to all people if our nation is to be strong.

E. R.


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About this document

My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt, January 26, 1950

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
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MEP edition publlished on 2008-06-30

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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.