The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers, Digital Edition > My Day
My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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NEW YORK. Tuesday —Monday in Boston was a very busy day.

It began with two hours in my last class at Brandeis University and I felt when I heard the final assignment being given to the young people that they were going to have to look with mature eyes at the papers they were going to turn in if they were to give satisfactory reports in them.

I have enjoyed my work with these young people and with Dr. Lawrence Fuchs. I learned far more, I'm sure, than I could possibly give, both from the students and from Professor Fuchs. Also, I have made some new friends, which is always a delightful experience. And I hope Professor and Mrs. Fuchs will bring their children to spend a few nights with me on their way to other places this coming summer, for I have come to look forward to any opportunity of seeing them.

Mr. Brower of Adams House, Harvard University, came for me at 12 o'clock and we drove back to his house, which is called Apthorp House and is inside the quadrangle of Adams House. It is used as the master's house, and Mr. Brower is the master of Adams House.

Apthorp House is a fascinating place, 200 years old, and this year is its 200th anniversary. The old woodwork and the proportion of the rooms give one a sense of the days when people had time to live in leisurely fashion and to enjoy the decoration of their homes.

After a delightful lunch with many nice people, some of whom I had known before, we went to the room in Westmorly Hall that my husband and Lathrop Brown occupied when they were in Cambridge. This room is now marked with a plaque, saying Franklin D. Roosevelt lived there from 1900 to 1904 while he attended Harvard University. It is occupied at present by three young men, but next year it will be used by two professors as offices and one seminar room.

Then I met with some selected students for an hour, from 3:30 to 4:30, and they asked me questions and we talked.

After that a young professor and his wife drove me into Boston where I called for a brief half hour on Mr. and Mrs. William Phillips. It was delightful to see my old friends and to have a chance to talk. But I had to get back to greet the senior class at their annual reception at the master's house and then to dress for their annual dinner at which I was the only lady. At this affair I made the speech and answered questions until 9:15 p.m.

It is fortunate that I have no feelings of inferiority where the gentlemen are concerned, or I would have been overwhelmed by them. But they were all very kind to me and I enjoyed being with them.

All day long the question on everybody's lips was: "How could we have allowed this plane incident to happen? Wouldn't it have been better, even though May Day is a good day for observing what the enemy has out in the way of new equipment, to have been scrupulous about not spying before the summit conference?"

Certainly, all nations spy; certainly, Mr. Khrushchev knows what goes on and is no more surprised than we are. But it gave him a chance to create an incident that will put us in wrong with the Asiatic nations. If Mr. Khrushchev does not like what goes on at the summit he will say we made it impossible to negotiate with confidence in each other. He will get out of his internal difficulties and we will be blamed for failure.

We cannot afford to be stupid too often.


(Copyright, 1960, by United Feature Syndicate, Inc.)

Names and Terms Mentioned or Referenced

  • New York (N.Y., United States) [ index ]

About this document

My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt, May 11, 1960

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
The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers Project

Available under licence from the Estate of Anna Eleanor Roosevelt.

Published with permission from the Estate of Anna Eleanor Roosevelt.

MEP edition publlished on June 30, 2008.

TEI-P5 edition published on April 28, 2017.

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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.