Amazing Grace, Remembered; A Count Of Honor, Please, Our Lost Nurses

Fewer ads. Lots of American Civil War content!
JOIN NOW: REGISTER HERE!

JPK Huson 1863

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Forum Host
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Messages
19,196
Location
Central Pennsylvania
nurse.jpg

This, because what a surviving nurse said years later of those lost, sticks in my head. Posted her comment before, but it belongs amongst her peers. How flowers and vines take over the stones, and butterflies play where sorrow once walked from a grave.

Hoping this may grow into something with greater form. Numbers of casualties, from reading various sources, seem arguable; 620, 000 soldiers or more, perished in the American Civil War. There is no count, much less estimate of how many nurses perished between 1861 and 1865.

Someone should correct this.

rose smsm.jpg
rose smsm.jpg
rose smsm.jpg
rose smsm.jpg
rose smsm.jpg
rose smsm.jpg
rose smsm.jpg
rose smsm.jpg


North and South, women and men, too, served as nurses to men not only wounded by the machines of war, but stricken with those disease. Diptheria, typhoid, cholera, sepsis, TB, measles, influenza and any infection carried by any bacteria happily breeding under conditions which would overwhelm the immune system of an average pig.

But still they came, our nurses. Most without pay. Dix was enabled to muster 10% of a humanizing force, our Army nurses, on a payroll. The rest? Aid societies, most famously The Sanitary Commission, The Christian Commission, each state's ( North and South ) aid societies, countless city, town, church and plain, old groups of ladies formed to plain, old send help.

And civilians. The war rolled through towns like a tsunami. Civilians brought wounded in from the streets, slept on the floor, hung red flags from windows announcing ' Wounded, here '. Mothers, daughters, sisters, aunts and friends traveled to battlefields in search of wounded loved ones. More stayed than we can know- many stayed to nurse after finding their loved one dead. Nurses, all.

It will be tough, creating a common cemetery for all of them, if not giving each a name. It must be done.

Next post, suggestions, please. I'll start, with how to do it in a thread. No ego here, if anyone has ideas, please, please say so. keeping count through pages ( I hope ) of a thread, without duplicating will require effort. Our nurses, North and South, deserve it.

bf big.JPG
 
Last edited:

JPK Huson 1863

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Forum Host
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Messages
19,196
Location
Central Pennsylvania
We discussed this on the other thread; bringing those we know of, here, in separate posts will be helpful.

Out of time today, hoping for help with this.Thinking post numbers will be useful for each nurse, remembered. If someone can name a nurse already listed, who died, perhaps refer back?

OH, and perhaps we should have a list, copy/paste, to continue to the next post? Add a new casualty, next post, is part of the list.

Not merely a name, please. Anything, anyone knows of these women, please include. Research would be wonderful, if anyone has time.
 

John Hartwell

Major
Forum Host
Joined
Aug 27, 2011
Messages
8,319
Location
Central Massachusetts
From Mary Livermore's "Massachusetts Women in the Civil War."

Miss Mary Dwight Pettes was born in Boston, and was a member of a family noted for generations for intelligence and religious and moral excellence. She chose to enter hospital service in St. Louis, rather than in the east, because the work there was severer and less attractive, and few experienced and trained women had then entered that field. We know little of her life in those western hospitals, save what she revealed in her letters to the “Boston Transcript." She assisted in the care of the horribly mutilated and frozen soldiers who were brought from the battlefield of Fort Donelson. She was in the hospitals into which the most severely wounded were brought from the Golgothas of Pittsburg Landing and Pea Ridge. Wherever the need was greatest and the relief work required heroic endurance, there Miss Pettes was found, patient, untiring, forgetful of herself, a benediction and an ever-present help.

"I have never known what human suffering is," she wrote, while caring for the wounded and frozen soldiers of Fort Donelson; "I have never known what capacities for anguish were enwrapped in the human body, until the victims of the battles of Fort Donelson, Pittsburg Landing and Pea Ridge were placed under my care. What a condensation of horrors is contained in that one word 'war'!" She ministered to others at the cost of her own life. Worn down with work among these dreadful sufferers, breathing steadily the infected air of the tainted wards, she was smitten with typhoid fever, and in the early part of the year 1863 she sank into the arms of death, with words of consolation and sympathy to her patients upon her lips, among whom she fancied herself occupied. Rev. Dr. Eliot of St. Louis sent to the "Christian Register" of Boston, in May, 1863, a beautiful tribute to this noble Boston girl, who, as he truly said, "had died a martyr to the cause of country and liberty quite as much as any of those who fell on the field of battle."

 
Fewer ads. Lots of American Civil War content!
JOIN NOW: REGISTER HERE!

John Hartwell

Major
Forum Host
Joined
Aug 27, 2011
Messages
8,319
Location
Central Massachusetts
Frank Moore, in Women of the war: their heroism and self-sacrifice (1867), sketches the lives of three who expended their lives serving the sick and wounded. One of them, Mrs. E. E. George, worked long and hard in the West, before going to Wilmington, N.C., in February 1865, at the behest of Dorothea Dix.

"Hardly had the noble woman arrived at Wilmington before there reached that point eleven thousand Union prisoners, who had just been released from the stockade at Salisbury. Their condition was in the last degree pitiable and wretched. Two thousand of them had not a whole garment upon their bodies; two hundred had lost their feet by frost. To these sufferers, and with very inadequate hospital supplies, Mrs. George devoted herself, day and night, in labors to relieve, as far as possible, the most acute and pressing of their wants.

"Here it was that this excellent lady finished her toils, and crowned her long and active career of beneficence by deliberate self-martyrdom. She literally worked herself to death. By day she was constantly occupied in superintending the manufacture of clothing for the naked; at night she went into the hospitals, and, depriving herself of sleep, passed many of the hours of darkness in nursing the greatest sufferers. Exertions such as these could not, from the nature of things, last long. For more than two years, she had taken only brief periods of rest : she was advanced in years, and the peculiar form of typhoid fever which attacked the released prisoners for whom she so heroically labored, was in a high degree contagious. Suddenly her system gave way, and she was pronounced severely ill with typhoid fever. ... [For a time] she appeared considerably better, and expressed herself as though she might be permitted to reach home, and see the faces of her daughters once more. All the preparations were made for her removal. As she felt a little faint, Dr. Wishard ordered a stimulating drink, and went out into the city, to attend to some final business before starting. Upon his return, what was his astonishment to find his patient a corpse! The grasp of the disease had been deeper than he supposed, and after the fatigue and excitement of preparing to return home, she sank into a relapse which nothing could arrest, and passed directly from the scene of her last and greatest labors to the immediate fruition of her abundant and heavenly reward."
 

JPK Huson 1863

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Forum Host
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Messages
19,196
Location
Central Pennsylvania
Thank so much Jno! It'll be tough going, have a feeling. If you have any ideas on keeping this from becoming unwieldy, say so, please? Of course, it'll require length before it becomes unmanageable.

1. Miss Mary Dwight Pettis, post #3, Boston, d. 1863, unknown hospital ( can be edited in a copy/paste ), typhoid
2. Mrs. E. E. George, post #4, d.1865, Wilmington, N.C. typhoid
 
Fewer ads. Lots of American Civil War content!
JOIN NOW: REGISTER HERE!

JPK Huson 1863

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Forum Host
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Messages
19,196
Location
Central Pennsylvania
died feb 1865 1.JPG

died feb 1865 2.JPG

4. Miss Yancy, Morristown, post #7, NY, d Annapolis, 1865, typhoid
5. Miss Rose Billings, post #7, Washington, DC, d. Annapolis, 1865, typhoid

This is from Annapolis, 1865, a letter written so closely to the same time, in the same place, it is extremely like, this describes these two nurses. It is not possible to state this as fact, seems probable. And just awful.
dies jan 1865 1.JPG
 
Last edited:

JPK Huson 1863

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Forum Host
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Messages
19,196
Location
Central Pennsylvania
dies ohio 1862.JPG


6. Miss Cutler, post #8, Massachusetts, d. New Bern, 1862

died anna mcmahon.JPG


7. Mrs. Anna McMahon, post #8, date, place to be edited

8. Emma Stephenson, post #8, d. July 16, 1864, Marietta, Georgia, disease

9. Mary Brady, post #8 d. Phildelphia, 1864

died mary brady 1864.JPG


died helen gilson.JPG

10. Mrs. Helen Gilson, post #8, Massachusetts , d. 1868, health broken
 
Last edited:

JPK Huson 1863

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Forum Host
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Messages
19,196
Location
Central Pennsylvania
So, a pitiful number, given what we can suspect is the whole, but perhaps each ten, we ( hopefully ) can copy/paste the list, feel free to edit.


1. Miss Mary Dwight Pettis, post #3, Boston, d. 1863, unknown hospital ( can be edited in a copy/paste ), typhoid

2. Mrs. E. E. George, post #4, d.1865, Wilmington, N.C. typhoid

3. Nelson Aikens, post #6, Painsville, Ohio, an Army nurse, died of typhoid in 1862

4. Miss Yancy, Morristown, post #7, NY, d Annapolis, 1865, typhoid

5. Miss Rose Billings, post #7, Washington, DC, d. Annapolis, 1865, typhoid

6. Miss Cutler, post #8, Massachusetts, d. New Bern, 1862

7. Mrs. Anna McMahon, post #8, date, place to be edited

8. Emma Stephenson, post #8, d. July 16, 1864, Marietta, Georgia, disease

9. Mary Brady, post #8 d. Phildelphia, 1864

10. Mrs. Helen Gilson, post #8, Massachusetts , d. 1868, health broken
 
Fewer ads. Lots of American Civil War content!
JOIN NOW: REGISTER HERE!

JPK Huson 1863

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Forum Host
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Messages
19,196
Location
Central Pennsylvania
died brown canant csa.JPG


Mention of two Southern women, here. This may be a non-academic approach, open to mistakes but it's at least an attempt.

11. Mrs. Canant, post #11, Columbus, Ohio, CSA nurse coming north to wounded, disease
12. Mrs. Stephen Brown, post #11, Columbus, Ohio, CSA nurse coming north to wounded, disease

died vesta.JPG


13. Mrs. Underwood, post 11#, ' of Brown Hospital ', disease
14. Mrs. Alling, post 11# of Crittenden Hospital, disease
 
Fewer ads. Lots of American Civil War content!
JOIN NOW: REGISTER HERE!

John Hartwell

Major
Forum Host
Joined
Aug 27, 2011
Messages
8,319
Location
Central Massachusetts
Note: "#6. Miss Cutler" is actually Carrie E. Cutter. Some years ago we had a thread about her.

That thread also cites the Diocese of Little Rock newspaper, the Guardian, of Aug. 29, 1931, which tells of two Sisters of Charity from the Community at Nazareth, Ky., who were apparently the first nurses to give their lives:

Sr. Mary Lucy Dosh, died of fever from attending wounded at Paducah, Ky., Dec. 29, 1861
Sr. Mary Catherine Malone, also of fever, at General Hospital #1, Louisville, Jan. 31, 1862
 

JPK Huson 1863

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Forum Host
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Messages
19,196
Location
Central Pennsylvania
Note: "#6. Miss Cutler" is actually Carrie E. Cutter. Some years ago we had a thread about her.

That thread also cites the Diocese of Little Rock newspaper, the Guardian, of Aug. 29, 1931, which tells of two Sisters of Charity from the Community at Nazareth, Ky., who were apparently the first nurses to give their lives:

Sr. Mary Lucy Dosh, died of fever from attending wounded at Paducah, Ky., Dec. 29, 1861
Sr. Mary Catherine Malone, also of fever, at General Hospital #1, Louisville, Jan. 31, 1862

Thank you! I'll add them, and appreciate it so much. As I said, given the scope, it may seem a little hopeless, thinking some list, much less count, could be made. Still- it's so worth the effort and more than past time.
 
Fewer ads. Lots of American Civil War content!
JOIN NOW: REGISTER HERE!

JPK Huson 1863

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Forum Host
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Messages
19,196
Location
Central Pennsylvania
Every ten casualties, add list, copy/paste.edit, including post #'s with edits.


1. Miss Mary Dwight Pettis, post #3, Boston, d. 1863, unknown hospital ( can be edited in a copy/paste ), typhoid

2. Mrs. E. E. George, post #4, d.1865, Wilmington, N.C. typhoid

3. Nelson Aikens, post #6, Painsville, Ohio, an Army nurse, died of typhoid in 1862

4. Miss Yancy, Morristown, post #7, NY, d Annapolis, 1865, typhoid

5. Miss Rose Billings, post #7, Washington, DC, d. Annapolis, 1865, typhoid

6. Miss Carrie E. Cutler, post #8, post #13, Massachusetts, d. New Bern, 1862

7. Mrs. Anna McMahon, post #8, date, place to be edited

8. Emma Stephenson, post #8, d. July 16, 1864, Marietta, Georgia, disease

9. Mary Brady, post #8 d. Phildelphia, 1864

10. Mrs. Helen Gilson, post #8, Massachusetts , d. 1868, health broken

11. Mrs. Canant, post #11, Columbus, Ohio, CSA nurse coming north to wounded, disease

12. Mrs. Stephen Brown, post #11, Columbus, Ohio, CSA nurse coming north to wounded, disease

13. Mrs. Underwood, post 11#, ' of Brown Hospital ', disease

14. Mrs. Alling, post 11# of Crittenden Hospital, disease

15. Miss Elizabeth Temple, post #12, Chester County, PA, d. Seminary Hosp., Georgetown, DC, 1862

16. " Many Sisters " of Charity, post #12, unknown cloister, need edit, d. Chickahominy hospitals

17. Sr. Mary Lucy Dosh, post #13, died of fever from attending wounded at Paducah, Ky., Dec. 29, 1861

18. Sr. Mary Catherine Malone, post #13, also of fever, at General Hospital #1, Louisville, Jan. 31, 1862

19. " Nurses, Co M First Artillery ", Post 15, Florida, late February, 1864

20, 21, 22. " Three of Four Nurses died ", post #16, Fort Gibson, Arkansas River, d. April 1863
 
Fewer ads. Lots of American Civil War content!
JOIN NOW: REGISTER HERE!

JPK Huson 1863

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Forum Host
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Messages
19,196
Location
Central Pennsylvania
Continuing, have had no time. From " Our Army Nurses ", a snip from the forward.

died book memorial.JPG


" A LARGE PROPORTION GO TO THEIR GRAVES UNRECOGNIZED AND UNREWARDED ". They did at the time, too, between 1861 and 1863. If it was nearly impossible to be recognized as an enrolled Army nurse, those Sisters, Sanitary Commission nurses, Christian Commission, aid workers from state, church and local organizations- and women who just, plain showed up on battlefields have no chance.

It'd be good to find them.
 

JPK Huson 1863

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Forum Host
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Messages
19,196
Location
Central Pennsylvania
24. Mrs. Fanny Swan Warriner, post #20,Louisville, Kentucky, d. 1865

MRS. FANNY SWAN WARRINER,

who bore heroically to the end a woman's part in war, having died at Louisville, Kentucky, on her way home from the Head-quarters Relief Station of the Sanitary Commission with the Army of the Tennessee,—of disease there contracted.


25. William Platt, Junior, post #20, unknown, unknown

WILLIAM PLATT, Junior, Esq.,

late a Relief Agent of the Sanitary Commission, who died from the effect of prolonged exposure and excessive exertion in pushing succor to the wounded during and after the battles of South Mountain, Crampton's Gap, and Antietam;—


From; Hospital Transports; A MEMOIR of the Embarkation of the Sick and Wounded Author: Frederick Law Olmsted
 
Fewer ads. Lots of American Civil War content!
JOIN NOW: REGISTER HERE!
Top