My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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PORTLAND, Maine, Friday—No one need ever tell me that the New England people are not hospitable. I have been asked to stop and eat lobsters with half a dozen people on the way home and, further more, they include the whole family in their invitation. One or two kind people even suggest that I stay awhile and get a rest, and promise to tell no one of my impending visit. But Campobello is a good place to rest and, much as I appreciate all these kind offers, unfortunately, when I leave here I must really head for home and my neglected duties.

I left Campobello and went to Bangor yesterday morning, picked up Mr. Linaka, to help me drive home, spent the night in Portland and am off for Hyde Park.

I only had important personal letters forwarded to me here so I dread to think what both my desk and Miss Thompson's will look like when we get home. I am none the less appreciative and happy to know that we have so many friends in this state.

It was gratifying to see in the paper of the tribute paid to Congressman Mary Norton in the House of Representatives the other day. She is one of our Representatives who has earned the respect and affection of her colleagues. Men and women alike have admired her courage and her wisdom gained in her long years of public service.

I have been reading the galley proofs on the last volumes of my husband's letters which will appear late this autumn. I find a number of notes to Mrs. Norton which attest to his appreciation of her services, and I know that unless he had been genuinely fond of her he would not have written as he did. It is not often that an ardent Democrat like Mary Norton is praised by men representing both political philosophies. I have long had the privilege of calling Mrs. Norton my friend, and though I am sorry to see her leave public life, I hope I shall see her more often, and be able to consult her frequently on the many problems which concern us all as citizens.

The other day I read very thoroughly one of four most learned columnists and I was interested to see that he shares my feelings about a recent speech delivered by Mr. Stassen. It seems to me that too many important people advise that actions be taken without thinking through carefully enough the full implications that might follow the acceptance of their suggested course of action. Just now any action that might lead to a total war, which would inevitably embroil the greater part of the world, seems to me to require very mature reflection.

No one wants war, therefore anyone who plays into the hands of a government that might be willing to go to war is playing the game as that government wants it played. Sometimes I think the Soviets win their greatest victories by making us adopt their tactics, and by forcing us to say things which appear to indicate that we really are considering preparing for aggression. Nothing is further from the thoughts of our people, and, fortunately for us, our government cannot go to war until the people are convinced that it is the only thing our country can do to preserve our freedom and our honor.

E. R.


Names and Terms Mentioned or Referenced

  • Portland (Me., United States) [ index ]

About this document

My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt, August 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

TEI-P5 edition published on 2017-04-28

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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.