Women Public Speakers in the United States, 1800-1925: A Bio-Critical Sourcebook

By Karlyn Kohrs Campbell | Go to book overview

CLARA BARTON
(1821-1912), advocate for the American Red Cross

Mary M. Roberts

After reading Jean Henri Dunant's vivid descriptions of war-wounded soldiers' sufferings in 1859 in Un Souvenir de Solferino, Dr. Theodore Maunoir declared, "We must get up an agitation" to prevent such misery in the future ( Dulles, 1950:7). With three others, Maunoir and Dunant formed a Committee of Five that met in Geneva in September 1863, which became the International Committee of the Red Cross, and thus founded the international organization.

Within six years, twenty-four countries had signed the Treaty of Geneva and established Red Cross societies to insure the neutrality of the wartime wounded and their caretakers. The United States did not sign; in 1864 and in 1865, Secretary of State William Seward advised "holding aloof" from the agreement. In 1869, Dr. Henry W. Bellows, president of the American Association for Relief of the Misery of the Battlefields and former president of the Civil War Sanitary Commission, campaigned unsuccessfully for approval. His Battlefields organization dissolved in 1872.

After doing civilian relief work in Strasbourg and elsewhere during the Franco- Prussian War, in the summer of 1877 Clara Barton received approval from the International Red Cross to begin a concerted agitation for U.S. approval of the Geneva treaty, which resulted in Senate passage in 1882. In 1959, Charles Hurd called the Red Cross "one of the great moral movements in the history of mankind" and credited U.S. participation to the "practical maneuvering of a diminutive, dedicated woman already internationally famous for her battlefield work in the Civil War" ( Hurd, 1959:13). Barton, he declared, "had the imagination to develop a long-range public relations program that . . . modern practitioners of that art might well copy" (49).

Clara Barton is well known as a heroic Civil War nurse and founder of the American Red Cross. She was not considered seriously as a feminist, however, until the 1970s, and especially after Elizabeth Brown Pryor's revisionist biography appeared ( 1987). Pryor asserted that Barton's achievements as a feminist are "of equal importance" to her war nursing and Red Cross accomplishments, and include functioning as "the first female American diplomat . . . who participated in an astonishing number of the nineteenth century's major events . . . a personal friend of figures as varied as Susan B. Anthony, Frederick Douglass, Benjamin Butler, and Kaiser Wilhelm" (ix). On February 21, 1866, she may have become the first woman to testify before Congress when she appeared before the Joint Committee on Reconstruction ( Pryor, 1987:147). This chapter argues that she deliberately kept her feminism implicit, a decision that was a canny adaptation to the circumstances of her time.

In his introduction to Mary Massey Bonnet Brigades ( 1966), Alan Nevins

-26-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Women Public Speakers in the United States, 1800-1925: A Bio-Critical Sourcebook
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 512

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.