BY-WAYS - 10/23/39 - Town Hall Lecture. Lord Marley

What a beautiful Sabbath Day! Never have the trees been more beautiful. A maple tree outside our dining-room window is all red and gold; the sumac in the thicket back of our house is a gorgeous red. This seems the ideal day to visit a certain farm not so far away, where there is a fine litter of pigs and a new-born calf. But alas! My city-born family is not enthusiastic over the idea. I had so hoped to bring to you today a lecture by Dr. William Lyon Phelps, that grand old teacher of Yale University, now retired. He was scheduled to speak here last Wednesday, in our Town Hall series. Through Mr. Walker's generosity I secured a ticket of admission, as well as to Alec Templeton's music fest, to be held here next Wednesday, and the chance to hear at least one more celebrity. To our great dismay, Dr. Phelps was taken ill, and could not come. Lord Marley, deputy speaker of the House of Lords in London, took his place. I anticipated a highly informative and entertaining lecture, so I went anyway. The Town Hall lectures are patronized chiefly by the women in the upper brackets, financially speaking; and they would have it said, intellectually speaking, as well. They were beautifully groomed, every beauty-parlor curl in place, lovely, manicured hands; the correct costume for a morning lecture, to be followed by a luncheon at our swankiest hotel, in the ballroom of which the lecture was given. In studying their faces, I found not one shiny nose in the lot; nor many shining countenances, either - you know, the kind you see in one who has just come from delivering a layette to a poor mother who needs it but can't afford it. These faces were determined faces, that seemed to say, "I defy anyone to be better informed on the latest books and plays, or on world affairs than I am." They were in search of "culture." One woman was so eager for her portion that she walked right over my new shoes (which didn't add to my culture)....

Just at this point in my writing, a dear friend in difficulty sent for me. It is now only fifteen until mail time - the last mail. So I'll have volumes to tell you next time. This is my punishment for leaving this article until the late afternoon.

Until next week - good luck, and not too devastating a Hallowe'en.

Florence B. Taylor

Next -Alex Templeton. More from the Mailbag