Clara Barton - Civil War Nurse And - Founder Ofhe American Red Cross

* Clara Barton was born Decemeber 25th, 1821, in Oxford Massachusetts

* She Distributed Medical Supplies to Civil War Battlefields

* Founded the American Red Cross

* Died on April 12, 1912 in Glen Echo, Maryland

When the Civil War began Clara Barton was working as a clerk in the U.S. Patent Office. She learned that the Union Army was short of Medical Supplies, so she immediately set up an agency to fill the need. Although she was told the battlefield was no place for a woman, she gained permission to go to the front lines. At one battle after another she distributed supplies, nursed the wounded, and searched for men listed as missing. To the soldiers, she became known as "The Angel of the battlefield".

After the war, she went to Europe for a rest. Soon, though, she became involved as a Nurse in a War there, She learned about the work of the newly formed International Red Cross and returned home determined to establish an American Chapter.

After a ten year struggle, the Amereican National Red Cross was established in 1881, with Barton as its first President. She also wrote the American Amendment to the Geneva Convention, which was an international agreement that gave the Red Cross the authority to provide help in time of any disaster, such as floods or earthquakes, rather than only in wartime. 

It's important to note that Clara Barton was a very INDEPENDENT Woman. Barton caused crticism of the Red Cross when she appeared on the battlefield in Cuba during the Spainish-American War (1898). Some people said that she should not have been there as she was 77 years old. Her insistance on doing things her way led to the request that she step down as Red Cross President in 1904.

It is my opinion that if it were not for Clara's INDEPENDENT nature, the American Red Cross may not have been adopted. Thank God for Clara Barton and Women and Men like her.  

Robert Stilwell

Retired Mfg Supervisor

Volume 15, Issue 11, Posted 12:33 PM, 11.01.2023