Thursday, December 25, 2008

American Red Cross

Grand Old Partisan salutes Clara Barton, born on Christmas Day in 1821. During the Civil War, she volunteered at field hospitals and became Superintendant of Nurses. She excelled in fundraising and in distributing medical supplies.
Clara Barton was active in the Republican Party and campaigned for many Republican candidates. She was a political ally of Senator John Logan (R-IL), founder of Memorial Day and a Republican vice presidential nominee. Barton also campaigned for James Garfield (R-OH), elected president in 1880.
On May 12, 1881, Senator Omar Conger (R-MI) convened a meeting in his home at which Barton made plans to establish the American Red Cross. Nine days later, Barton and her colleagues drafted an organizational charter. Her friend Frederick Douglass (R-MD), the Washington, DC Recorder of Deeds, registered the new organization. She then met with Secretary of State James Blaine, a future Republican presidential nominee, and President Garfield to discuss setting up chapters nationwide.

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