*** World War I American Red Cross military role

American Red Cross: World War I Military Role

World War I Red Cross
Figure 1.--World War I military commanders wanted to keep women including nurses as far away from danger as possible, but soon realized that many more lives could be saved if wounds were treated immediately at the front rather than at distant base hospitals hours or days laster. The American Expeduitionary Force benefitted from the over 3 years of war befre the United States entered the War. The American Red Cross was active in Europe before America entered the War. Over 22,000 professionally-trained female nurses were recruited by the American Red Cross to serve in the U.S. Army between (1917-19) and smaller numbers for the U.S. Navy. Over 10,000 of these nurses served on the Western Front. The U.S. Army and U.S. Navy did not give these valiant women rank or commissions. The Red Cross provided many of the nurses doing convaslesent care. The ARC caption here read, "With an American Red Cross nurse's aid to look after his comfort and a boy scout to run his errands this wounded American soldier has all he could ask for at American Military Hospital No. 5, at Auteuil supported by the American Red Cross." We believe that the Boy Scout is an American boy. There were Americans living in France at the time, even during the War.

The Red Cross attacted little interest in America during the 19th century, primarily because it was seen as an indtitution designed for countries involved in warfare, something the United States was not primarly involved with or of interest to most Americams. The Civil War was the only War involving a major national effort that America was engaged in during the 19th Century. Unlike Euroope there was no peacetime draft or significant militay spending. The U.S. Army after the Civil War was primarily involved with mainting the peace in the West and the only real threat were the Plains Indians. The U.S. Army was smller than all of the major European countries and even some of the minor countris. Of course most of Europe was still dominated by malor empires: Austrian, German, Ottoman, and Russian Empires. One of theattractions of America was a way to evade European military conscription. The American Red Cross was active in the Spasnish Anerican War (1898-99), but this was a short war involving a relatively brief period of time. the interest in the Red Cross, however, did not change significantly, primarily when America entrered World War I War (1917). The United States Army was totally unprepared for war. We think it is safe to say that the Red Cross was more prepared than the Army. The Production Corps which was created (1916), expanded services to include the U.S. military. The Red Cross contributed to hospital service, camp servicdes, canteen, motor corps, and home service. Of course it is best known for the nurses aiding injured service menmbers. Unlike World War II, nurses were primarily Red Cross workers, not Army and Navy personnel. here.


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Created: 9:14 PM 11/10/2022
Last updated: 9:14 PM 11/10/2022