Gladys Leitner’s Account of the Summer of 1938, Written for Roger Cutter in 1974
Mother’s conservatism appeared to emanate not so much from a repression exercised upon her by people or doctrines as from her own simple enchantment with life exactly as it was. It did not matter to her that Ephraim Dunne was a gentle, unimaginative, methodical gentleman who had obviously married her because she was the daughter of the president of the Bank of Commerce. She seemed just as pleased with the kind of mild, exclusive devotion that he offered her as she was with the garden parties and card games and card droppings and dinner parties that made up so much of her routinized existence. Mother did not see why anyone should want anything more than she had. America was the greatest of nations and had the greatest future; business was constantly improving the lot of the human race, and science would find a solution to all the horrid diseases that threatened even a woman as robustly healthy as Isabel Dunne.