Clarissa “Clara” Barton was a shy girl who grew up to become a teacher, nurse, and humanitarian. At a time when few women worked outside the home, she became the first woman to hold a government job, as a patent clerk in Washington, DC. In 1864, she was appointed “lady in charge” of the hospitals at the front lines of the Union Army, where she became known as the “Angel of the Battlefield.” Clara Barton built a career helping others. She went on to found the American Red Cross, one of her greatest accomplishments, and one of the most recognized organizations in the world.
Author: Stephen B. Oates
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Release Date: 1995-05-01
Genre: Biography & Autobiography
When the Civil War broke out, Clara Barton wanted more than anything to be a Union soldier, an impossible dream for a thirty-nine-year-old woman, who stood a slender five feet tall. Determined to serve, she became a veritable soldier, a nurse, and a one-woman relief agency operating in the heart of the conflict. Now, award-winning author Stephen B. Oates, drawing on archival materials not used by her previous biographers, has written the first complete account of Clara Barton's active engagement in the Civil War. By the summer of 1862, with no institutional affiliation or official government appointment, but impelled by a sense of duty and a need to heal, she made her way to the front lines and the heat of battle. Oates tells the dramatic story of this woman who gave the world a new definition of courage, supplying medical relief to the wounded at some of the most famous battles of the war -- including Second Bull Run, Antietam, Fredericksburg, Battery Wagner, the Wilderness, Spotsylvania, and Petersburg. Under fire with only her will as a shield, she worked while ankle deep in gore, in hellish makeshift battlefield hospitals -- a bullet-riddled farmhouse, a crumbling mansion, a windblown tent. Committed to healing soldiers' spirits as well as their bodies, she served not only as nurse and relief worker, but as surrogate mother, sister, wife, or sweetheart to thousands of sick, wounded, and dying men. Her contribution to the Union was incalculable and unique. It also became the defining event in Barton's life, giving her the opportunity as a woman to reach out for a new role and to define a new profession. Nursing, regarded as a menial service before the war, became a trained, paid occupation after the conflict. Although Barton went on to become the founder and first president of the Red Cross, the accomplishment for which she is best known, A Woman of Valor convinces us that her experience on the killing fields of the Civil War was her most extraordinary achievement.
Author: Elizabeth Brown Pryor
Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press
Release Date: 2011-06-29
Genre: Biography & Autobiography
Widely known today as the "Angel of the Battlefield," Clara Barton's personal life has always been shrouded in mystery. In Clara Barton, Professional Angel, Elizabeth Brown Pryor presents a biography of Barton that strips away the heroic exterior and reveals a complex and often trying woman. Based on the papers Clara Barton carefully saved over her lifetime, this biography is the first one to draw on these recorded thoughts. Besides her own voluminous correspondence, it reflects the letters and reminiscences of lovers, a grandniece who probed her aunt's venerable facade, and doctors who treated her nervous disorders. She emerges as a vividly human figure. Continually struggling to cope with her insecure family background and a society that offered much less than she had to give, she chose achievement as the vehicle for gaining the love and recognition that frequently eluded her during her long life. Not always altruistic, her accomplishments were nonetheless extraordinary. On the battlefields of the Civil War, in securing American participation in the International Red Cross, in promoting peacetime disaster relief, and in fighting for women's rights, Clara Barton made an unparalleled contribution to American social progress. Yet the true measure of her life must be made from this perspective: she dared to offend a society whose acceptance she treasured, and she put all of her energy into patching up the lives of those around her when her own was rent and frayed.
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Author: Marian Moser Jones
Publisher: JHU Press
Release Date: 2012-11-29
In dark skirts and bloodied boots, Clara Barton fearlessly ventured on to Civil War battlefields to tend to wounded soldiers. She later worked with civilians in Europe during the Franco-Prussian War, lobbied legislators to ratify the Geneva conventions, and founded and ran the American Red Cross. The American Red Cross from Clara Barton to the New Deal tells the story of the charitable organization from its start in 1881, through its humanitarian aid during wars, natural disasters, and the Depression, to its relief efforts of the 1930s. Marian Moser Jones illustrates the tension between the organization's founding principles of humanity and neutrality and the political, economic, and moral pressures that sometimes caused it to favor one group at the expense of another. This expansive book narrates the stories of: • U.S. natural disasters such as the Jacksonville yellow fever epidemic of 1888, the Sea Islands hurricane of 1893, and the 1906 San Francisco earthquake• crises abroad, including the 1892 Russian famine and the Armenian massacres of 1895–96• efforts to help civilians affected by the civil war in Cuba• power struggles within the American Red Cross leadership and subsequent alliances with the American government• the organization's expansion during World War I• race riots in East St. Louis, Chicago, and Tulsa between 1917 and 1921• help for African American and white Southerners after the Mississippi flood of 1927• relief projects during the Dust Bowl and after the New Deal An epilogue relates the history of the American Red Cross since the beginning of World War II and illuminates the organization's current practices as well as its international reputation. -- Manon S. Parry, University of Amsterdam
From bestselling author Patricia Polacco's family tree -- the true story of young Clara Barton. Animals and flowers were Clara's best friends. She had a special way with critters and found joy in the beauty that sprang from the soil. But whenever Clara talked, her words didn't come out right. As hard as she tried, she could not get over her lisp. Clara's older brother Davie understood that his sister was gifted. When folks made fun of Clara's stilted words, Davie was always at her side reminding her that she had a talent for healing creatures. Davie told his sister, "Some day you are going to be a very great lady." And that's exactly what happened. Clara Barton became one of the most famous medical practitioners of all time, and founded the American Red Cross.