Like his Rockefeller Foundation job, Dr. Sawyer's work for the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration
(UNRRA) required much traveling. His first trip was to London for several months in the summer of 1944. In this letter, he
described conditions in London and visits with daughter Ruth (who was serving in the W.A.C.s), and enclosed a newspaper clipping
which reported his arrival.
Item is handwritten.
Number of Image Pages:
6 (284,399 Bytes)
1944-08-05 (August 5, 1944)
Sawyer, Wilbur A.
This item is in the public domain. It may be used without permission.
Medical Subject Headings (MeSH):
Controlling Disease during World War II, 1939-1944
It is a very quiet Sunday, so far, and I shall have dinner with Ruth in her apartment this evening. The city seems almost
deserted, as many persons have gone into the country for the long week-end. Monday is a Bank Holiday and nearly everything
will be closed including our offices.
I had invited Ruth and her room-mate and Dr. O'Brien to dinner on my birthday, which happens to be Monday. (I appreciate
their having made it a holiday in England.) Yesterday Ruth phoned that she would be
[END PAGE ONE]
[BEGIN PAGE TWO]
out of town and could not come, but invited me for this evening and declined firmly to be my guest to-night. She has already
sublet (?) her flat to Ruthmary Penfield of the Embassy for about the middle of September, so you can see that she expects
her office to be moved to an unnamed destination at an indefinite time. I ask no embarrassing questions.
Yesterday Mr. Winant invited me to luncheon and we had a very pleasant talk about UNRRA and things in general.
[END PAGE TWO]
[BEGIN PAGE THREE]
He had already heard of Peg's new job. He is working very hard, but seems well.
I am enclosing two clippings which will interest you. One is about the "fire-weed" or rose bay which has grown all
over the ruined sites and in places up on the walls. You will notice that it was named fire-weed because it spread so rapidly
over the ruined sites after the great fire of London, rather than because of its appearance after forest fires in America.
The other clipping explains itself.
[END PAGE THREE]
[BEGIN PAGE FOUR]
Evidently the reporter interviewed Dr. O'Brien and others as well as me. Doesn't the "fine old house on the River
Hudson" sound like the counterpart of an English estate.
Please give little Margaret my love and say that I received her letter and hope that she got mine. I miss her very much and
hope she is getting plenty of giant stories from Daddy.
Peg's letter and the announcement of her new job was quite a surprise. I see that it will involve your help and I shall
be interested in the details when you write next.
I now have a regular ration
[END PAGE FOUR]
[BEGIN PAGE FIVE]
book for clothes as well as food and can buy shirts to replace any lost in the laundry or worn out. The laundries take over
two weeks to return clothes on account of labor shortage, summer holidays, etc.
Please continue to use my APO address. It seems to be the most permanent one.
Sir Arthur Salter will soon be in the States and he may ring you up to give you the news about me. He is Senior Deputy Director
General under Gov. Lehman. Dr. Andrew Topping will go to Washington near the end of August, and you may possibly hear from
him. If you could see him or invite him to the house, I should appreciate it.
[END PAGE FIVE]
[BEGIN PAGE SIX]
This will be his first visit to the U.S.A. He is the Director of Health for the European region of UNRRA and we are working
My plans are still to remain in Europe, which means London, until about the middle of October.
We heard through the press of the death of Mr. Selskar Gunn and Dr. O'Brien and I sent a message of sympathy to Mrs. Gunn
through the Foundation.
I hope you have had a real vacation and are refreshed and bursting with energy. As always I send my warmest love.