Cary T. Grayson to Alice Gertrude Gordon Grayson




Cary T. Grayson Papers, Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library, Staunton, Virginia






My dearest,

This being Friday The 13th I thought that I would try my luck at the races out at Saint Cloud. It is a beautiful course and a fine day, but luck was not with me. The best I can calculate leaves me 13 francs loser. BMB won 75.2. You cannot imagine how little racing I have seen over here, notwithstanding, it is so close by. There are two tracks in the bois or just outside. The French Calvary horses are fine but the race horse has deteriorated during the war.

I had hoped to spend a few days at Saratoga this summer—during the month of August—BMB had plans to be there—also—how we would spend our winnings? But now my chances look pretty sad. From present signs we will not reach home before the first week in July—then, after the President remains in Washington a week or more—off to the Pacific Coast, which will consume a month or more.

While the President is in Washington I am either going to stop off at New York and go straight to you, or else go with him to Washington; remain there a day; then go direct to Stamford and remain until he is ready to start West. I want to d to do whichever plan will give me the most time with you and the boys.

Miss E. and the President have kindly asked me to stop at the White House for the time I am in Washington while you are away and 1600 is closed. They are so fine to me and a scarcely a day passes that they don’t speak of you in some endearing terms. And, always something sweet about the boys.

It is very warm here to-day. Ambassador and Mrs. Wallace gave a swell dinner to-night in honor of the President & Mrs. Wilson. All the diplomats were there. I sat next to General Pershing on one side and I cannot describe the other. The same old story. I am wondering how you and the boys are going to stand the trip to Stamford. I am anxious how you will get through New York and all the details you will have to attend to and how I wish that I could be there and do all for you—BMB and Dr Axson were here for lunch to-day. I must confess that I have another of those unp unpleasant companions on my neck—a boil—but not as bad the former. I am not feeling very badly but realize that my troubles, at present, are on my neck.

The President, Mrs. W, Dr Axson and BMB went for a long motor ride after lunch. I did not accompany them as the roads are very dusty and the dust collects around my affliction. I laid down for an hour. Then, my sporting blood began to circulate. I realized that the French Derby—100,000—Francs—was to be run at four o’clock, at Long Champs—less than a mile from where I was resting on my pillow—It was represented by the best thoroughbreds in France. Seventeen starters. Should I go? Sunday. Think of going to a horse race on Sunday, and with a boil on my neck and in a cloud of dust. All the elite and otherwise would be there. My sporting feelings were running strong, so I went—wanting to keep it quiet, I met every one I knew that I did not want to see. Guilty conscious. It was a great sight, not only from a horse viewpoint, but the costumes—These French ladies are real dressers.

At the dinner table I kept thinking what would this strict old Presbyterian elder and President say if he knew that I had been to a horse race on Sunday. I started to confess, then, I changed my mind until another and more favorable time. The incident would have amused you immensely.

I miss you terribly and am most anxious to get back to you and the boys. Good-night, Sweetheart.


We expect to go to Belgium to-morrow. I am glad for various reasons.

Miss E. said to me to-day, with a twinkle in her eye “I have a good one on you.” Of course, I at once thought it was about my going to the races yesterday, so I said I plead guilty and throw myself on the mercy of the court.

Later, she, the President and I, went for a ride. I confessed. Whereupon, the President nearly fell out of the car laughing. What Miss E. had in mind was not the races. This was the first news about that. The affair she referred to was an enthusiastic lady who sang my praises saying her daughter was a great admirer of mine. The guilty conscious and confession amused the President so much. Lots of love, my darling, I’m hurrying to catch the pouch—


Original Format




Grayson, Cary T. (Cary Travers), 1878-1938, “Cary T. Grayson to Alice Gertrude Gordon Grayson,” 1919 June 13, WWP15796, Cary T. Grayson Papers, Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library & Museum, Staunton, Virginia.