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Section III, Chapter I






According to the Manual for the Medical Department it was permissible for the department to utilize organized voluntary aid to supplement the resources and to assist the personnel of the Medical Department through the American National Red Cross, under the authority of the act of Congress approved April 24, 1912.1 This organization, in accordance with the terms of its charter, 2 is "a medium of communication between the people of the United States and their Army." No volunteer aid from any society or association, therefore, was to be accepted for the Army of the United States except through the American National Red Cross. This was true in the main during the World War with respect to organized voluntary aid in so far as it was applicable to the actual care of the sick and wounded, to the making of surgical dressings and other hospital supplies, and to the furnishing of comforts such as knitted garments, blankets, and other articles. Organized voluntary aid of this character was accepted by the Medical Department when offered through the medium of the Red Cross.3

The regulations, approved by the President of the United States, which governed-and still govern-the status, organization, and operations of this society when employed with the Army are given in the Manual for the Medical Department as follows:

(a) Th e organized Red Cross units serving with the land forces will constitute a part of the sanitary service of the land forces.

(b) When the War Department desires the use of the services of the Red Crow in time of war, or when war is imminent, the Secretary of War will communicate with the president of the society, specifying the character of the services required and designating the place or places where the personnel and materiel will be assembled.

(c) When any member of the Red Cross reports for duty with the land forces of the United States, pursuant to a proper call, he will thereafter be subject to military laws and regulations a provided in article 10 of the International Red Cross Convention of 1906, and will be provided with the necessary brassard and certificates of identity.

(d) Except in cases of great emergency, Red Cross personnel serving with the land forces will not be assigned to duty at the front, but will be employed in hospitals in the service of the interior, at the base, on hospital ships, and along lines of communications of the military forces of the United States.

(e) Red Cross organizations will not establish independent hospitals or other institutions, but will assist military sanitary formations at the places above indicated.

(f) Before military patients are assigned thereto, separate establishments maintained by the Red Cross Society will be placed under the immediate direction of a medical officer of the Army. Such officer will be held responsible for the management, discipline, and records of the institution: he will regulate admissions and discharges and see that the interests of both the Government and the-patients are conserved.

(g) No columns, sections, or individuals of the Red Cross Society will be accepted for service by the War Department unless previously inspected by a medical officer of the Army and found qualified for the service expected of them.


(h) The Red Cross Society may be called upon in time of war, or when war is impending. for the following classes of personnel: (1) Physicians and surgeons; (2) dentists; (3) pharmacists; (4)nurses; (5) clerks; (6) cooks and other hospital personnel; (7) litter bearers, drivers, and other transport personnel; (8) laborers.

(i) To facilitate the training of Red Cross personnel for the duties it may be called upon to per-form in time of war, it is divided into three classes: Class A, those willing to serve wherever needed; class B, those willing to serve in the service of the interior only; class C. those willing to serve at place of residence only; class A will be organized into sections and columns uniformed and equipped as may be prescribed by the central committee of the Red Cross and approved by the War Department. Such organized and equipped sections and columns will be trained for service at the bases and along the lines of communication of the forces in the field.

Class B will be trained for service in hospitals and other sanitary institutions that may be established in the service of the interior. Individuals of this class may also be organized into sections and columns and uniformed and equipped as prescribed for class A.

Class C will be composed of individuals of local Red Cross Societies who, on account of their occupation or experience in the care of sick and other hospital duties, may be expected to render efficient service in military sanitary institutions established in their locality.

(j) The Red Cross service at the base, along the line of communications, or in a military district will be under the supervision of a director general, who will conduct the service under the direction of the chief surgeon of the field army or expeditionary force.

(k) For service at the base and along lines of communications Red Cross personnel will be organized into-field columns, hospital columns, supply columns, information bureau sections.

(l) Field columns will supplement and assist the regular transport in the transportation of patients from field hospitals to evacuation and base hospitals. by the use of litters, ambulances, hospital trains, trains for patients, hospital ships, and ships for patients; by the establishment of rest and food stations, and by the performance of such other duties as they may be called upon to perform. Field columns will be organized as follows: 1 director, 4 assistant directors, 4 section chiefs, 16 assistant section chiefs, 64 men. A field column will be composed of four sections, each consisting of-I assistant director, I- section chief, 4 assistant section chiefs, 16 men.

In addition to the above, each director of a column will have a staff of two section chiefs to keep the records and conduct the supply service of the column.

Directors and assistant directors must be qualified physicians in good standing.

The training of field columns should include instruction in first aid, elementary hygiene, and Hospital Corps drill. The personnel of such columns should be made practically familiar with the use of the various appliances (including improvisations) for transporting sick and wounded, such as litters, ambulances, and other vehicles, with the fitting up of trains and ships for patients and with other similar duties. Instruction should also be given in the organization and conduct of rest and food stations. Some personnel of each column should also he made proficient in methods of disinfection.

(m) Hospital columns must be prepared to supplement and assist military hospital formations, to perform the necessary ward service, and to take up certain branches of hospital work, such as laundering and repair of linen, the management of kitchens, etc. Sections of hospital columns may also be assigned to duty on hospital trains and ships and to other military sanitary institutions.

Hospital columns for service at the base and along the line of communications will be organized as follows: 1 director, 3 assistant directors, 6 chief nurses, 45; nurses; such number of cooks, ward orderlies, and laborers as may be necessary.

The hospital column will be composed of three sections, each consisting of-1 assistant director, 2 chief nurses, 15 nurses; such number of cooks, ward orderlies, and laborers as may be necessary.

In addition to the above, each director of a column will have a staff of two section chiefs to keep the records and conduct the supply service of the column, and such number of staff

physicians as may be deemed expedient.

Directors, assistant directors, and staff physicians must be qualified practitioners of medicine in good standing.

The staff of the director of a hospital column may also include dentists.

The training of hospital. columns should comprise, in addition to strictly professional subjects, practical instructions in methods and mat6riel used in evacuation and base hospitals, and in hospital trains and ships. Methods and means of improvising hospital accommodations from local resources should also be included.


(n) Supply columns, composed of pharmacists and others experienced in handling medical and hospital supplies, clerks, teamsters, and laborers, will be organized for the purpose of establishing, and conducting a Red Cross supply service in connection with the military sanitary supply department. The training of the personnel of supply columns must include practical instruction concerning the kind and character of supplies used in the sanitary service, the methods of purchase, inspection, distribution, and such methods of accounting as may be prescribed by the central committee of the Red Cross.

(o) Information bureau sections composed of clerks, stenographers, and typewriters will serve under the immediate supervision of directors general of the Red Cross, and will be instructed in methods of correspondence, and of obtaining the necessary information from military authorities concerning sick and wounded and the dead, for the purpose of furnishing such information to relatives and friends. Information bureau sections may also be attached to the bureau of information for prisoners of war.

(p) A register will be kept in the office of the Surgeon General of the Army, upon which will be entered the name, place, strength, equipment, and efficiency of organized Red Cross units. No organization will be entered on the register, however, unless it shall have been inspected and approved by a representative of the War Department. A Red Cross unit that has been inspected and found qualified will be carried on the register for one year after date of such inspection.

Applications from columns or sections for entry upon the Surgeon General's register will be forwarded through Red Cross channels to The Adjutant General of the Army.

Applications from columns or sections borne on the Surgeon General's register for continuance on said register will be submitted annually on or before June 1, through Red Cross channels, to The Adjutant General of the Army.

 (q) Members of organized columns when in service will wear the uniform prescribed by the central committee and approved by the War Department. Their equipment will be assimilated to that used in the sanitary service.

(r) The personnel serving with the land and naval forces in time of war or threatened hostilities will, while proceeding to their place of duty, while serving thereat, and while returning there from, be transported and subsisted at the cost and charge of the United States as civilian employees employed with said forces. Red Cross supplies that may be tendered as a gift and accepted for use in the sanitary service will be transported at the cost and charge of the United States.

(s) Forage will be issued to Red Cross organizations in the field in case of emergency only, upon the guaranty of the Red Cross authorities that such issues will be replaced or the cost thereof refunded.

 (t) When available, suitable quarters may be assigned to the Red Crow in active service.


The following account of the war activities of the American Red Cross in the United States is based on a report furnished by the assistant director general, department of military relief. The account of the work of this organization overseas is given elsewhere (Volume II, Administration, American. Expeditionary Forces).


The participation of the American Red Cross in the medical and surgical work of the Medical Department of the Army was confined largely to overseas territory, while in this country it included assistance in the organization of hospitals, hospital units, and ambulance companies which were absorbed into the regular medical service.


Prior to the declaration of war by the United States the American Red Coss bad organized the department of military relief, the function of which was to render assistance from the Red Cross to the Medical Department of the


United States Army and Navy. This department adopted a concrete plan of preparedness for war by organizing base hospitals in connection with a number of the large civilian hospitals and medical schools in various cities throughout the country. A full account of this preliminary work, which may be said to have been the foundation upon which the overseas hospital service was organized and conducted, is given in the introduction (pp. 92 et seq.).


With the same idea of preparedness the American Red Cross authorized the organization, in the Red Cross, of ambulance companies to correspond with the companies in the Medical Department, 4 except that the Red Cross companies were motor companies, whereas up to 1916 the Army had made no provision for such motorized companies, 5 all the Regular Army companies being provided with animal-drawn vehicles. By the early spring of 1917, 46 ambulance companies had been organized. 5 As rapidly as the organization of the personnel of these companies was completed they were transferred to the Army Medical Department, assigned by it to the various divisions of the Army as Regular Army companies, and were dispatched overseas. 7 Complete equipment of motors and other things pertaining to such companies were provided, in most instances by the local Red Cross chapter or through the Red Cross by individuals interested in the unit. The account of activities of these companies overseas may be found elsewhere (Vol. II, Administration, American Expeditionary Forces, and Vol. VIII, Field Operations, American Expeditionary Forces)


The purpose of the sanitary training detachments of the American Red Cross at all times is primarily to teach first aid in a systematic way. In addition to this, however, the Red Cross undertakes to give a course of training such as is given to sanitary troops (Medical Department enlisted men), thus to build up a reserve of men, more or less trained, who would be available for enlistment in the Medical Department of the Army or Navy when needed. To accomplish this, the Red Cross chapters organized a large number of these detachments, and many of the men so trained before and during the war found their way into service with the Medical Department. These detachments as such had no military status, being solely for the purpose of education along the lines mentioned.


Soon after our forces began to assemble, it developed that the Red Cross, through its department of military relief, must assume greatly enlarged responsibilities in addition to its actual work of assistance to the Medical Department. To carry out this plan, the bureau of camp service was inaugurated, whose function was to extend Red Cross service to all the forces. The so-called hospital service became a feature of this service. Red Cross convalescent houses were built in connection with each hospital to provide a place of recreation and amusement for sick and wounded soldiers able to be up and around. There was also built in connection with each nurses' house a recreation house for the nurses. In the convalescent house Red Cross personnel was provided to care for Red Cross work among the sick and wounded,


This included efforts to amuse and entertain the men by reading to them; by writing letters to their friends and families; by arranging entertainments, amateur or professional; by teaching them games; by teaching them handicraft. For the entertainments, a stage was provided with scenery and all the necessary appurtenances thereto. Books and magazines were supplied through the American Library Association, which installed a library in each house. Rooms were provided in the house where relatives of seriously sick men might spend the night, if necessary. The main object of this service was to assist the Medical Department in its care of the sick and wounded and to make them feel that their home people had a very active interest in their welfare.

The hospital service of the Red Cross, which was directly. under the control of the commanding officer of the hospital, was largely made up of women volunteers, who were there to add a touch of home comfort to the sick, to keep the families advised as to the conditions of their men, to urge upon them the need for letting their families hear from them, and to endeavor on all occasions to care for their domestic troubles, in this way removing from their minds all causes for anxiety and worry. This judicious systematic assistance, without excess of sentimentality, proved of great assistance to the Army.


The entrance of the United States into the World War and the tremendous expansion of our Army and Navy called for corresponding increases in the activities of the American Red Cross, which involved large demands for motor transportation of materiel, equipment, and personnel. At first this was paid for out of Red Cross funds or, irregularly, by chapter members. Soon, however, some of the chapters realized that this service should be made regular and reliable, and accordingly a few motor corps were organized. The value of the service became so apparent that on February 1, 1918, the bureau of motor service was created at national headquarters in Washington, for the purpose of organizing, regulating, and directing Red Cross motor service throughout the United States.4 Rules and regulations, uniforms, and insignia were adopted, and motor corps were organized in many chapters throughout the country, which cooperated with the various other Red Cross activities and with the military and naval authorities. This resulted in the saving of much time and great expense and in the release of men who would otherwise have been required for such service.

The whole motor service was composed of women volunteers who donated not only their time and work, but in nearly all cases their cars and expense thereof, as well as their own uniforms. In addition, those who wished to qualify for the "first division" of the motor corps (ambulance and truck drivers) were obliged to pass examinations in motor mechanics, first aid. sanitary drill, and driving, and were given certificates only upon being passed.4 The "second division" (transportation drivers), though in uniform, were only required to have a knowledge of simple mechanics, of good driving, and of traffic rules. 4 This division had auxiliaries, not in uniform, who gave intermittent or lesser service or served when called upon. In some of the larger centers of population and at ports of embarkation and debarkation garages


for the cars and ambulances and dormitories for the women were arranged for or built for the purpose. At the time of the signing of the armistice there were nearly 300 motor corps, with a membership of approximately 11,000.Approximately 300 ambulances were in this service in the United States. 4


The expansion of the Army upon the entry of the United States into the war was so rapid that the problem of transporting the enormous number of men and the necessary equipment and supplies presented a task fraught with all but insurmountable difficulties. The War Department was confronted by a serious problem in providing additional food, medical supplies, and medical care for the men en route to the great concentration camps. To help meet this emergency, the Red Cross, early in June, 1917, organized in the department of military relief the bureau of canteen service. 4

A national director of canteen service was appointed, an immediate survey of the country was made, and a division director of canteen service was appointed in each of the 14 Red Cross divisions. Each division director promptly covered every railroad in his division, located the strategic railroad points, decided where canteen service should be inaugurated, and then issued instructions to the chapters to proceed with the organization. A national call was sent out to the women of America explaining the nature of this service. Within a comparatively short period more than 50,000 women had responded to the call of the canteen directors, and 700 well-organized units of specially selected women were in operation. There was a canteen at every important railroad junction and terminal in the United States, and several were established in Canada. Canteen huts, transfer hospitals, first-aid rooms, stockrooms, recreation rooms, shower baths, and other facilities were immediately erected at over 300 points along the lines of travel. Close and intimate contact was established with the railroad and Army officials, so that the canteens were advised by telegraph, in advance of movements of drafted men to camps, of movements of troops from camp to camp and from camps to embarkation points. Sweaters, comfort kits, magazines, food, fruit, and flowers were given to the men; bands of music were provided and banquets were served. The canteens along the line met them; no matter how late at night, what day of the week, or what the weather conditions were, the canteens were always on duty. All during the winter the little canteen huts remained open day and night. In the heat of summer large batteries of shower baths were installed and operated at fixed points along the lines of travel. The effect of the canteen service worked like magic on the men.

Arrangements were made with the Army officials so that if troop train commissary officers found their supplies exhausted and desired to procure new supplies, they could telegraph ahead to a canteen and articles and food-stuffs would be purchased for them at cost. Complete meals and lodging could be arranged for if desired. Instructions were issued by the Surgeon General that troop train commanders in need of the services of surgeons, physicians, or dentists en route should call on the Red Cross canteen, wherefor such service would be promptly supplied. 4


Relatives were put in touch with their soldier kinsmen, home troubles were taken care of, and every conceivable service was rendered by the canteens for the relief and comfort of the men in transit.

By cooperation with the bureau of canteen service, the Surgeon General's Office arranged with the Red Cross canteens to take sick men from trains; to give receipts to the commanding officer; to transfer the men to military or private hospitals along the lines; to care for their service papers; to arrange for medical, surgical, and dental attention; to notify the parents; and to advise the proper commanding officers., The canteens sent the men back to their posts after they recovered their health and were able to rejoin their commands. 4 Funeral arrangements of men who died were made by the canteens; accompanied by escorts, the bodies were shipped to relatives. The records of the bureau of canteen service showed that up to December 30, 1918, more than50,000,000 canteen services were rendered men in transit. More than 103,000men who became sick en route were aided, and over 9,000 sick men were removed from trains and transferred to hospitals along the lines of travel.

Some of the supplies distributed without charge are enumerated to show the scale on which the canteen service operated: 1,206,480 gallons of coffee, 8,369,664 sandwiches, 5,523,396 pieces of reading matter, 5,075,172 boxes of matches, 93,408,640 cigarettes, 475,992 pounds of tobacco, 996,816 pounds of candy, 6,184,372 bars of chocolate, 32,143,704 postal cards, 97,368 bushels of fruit, 538,416 meals and lunches.

American Red Cross canteens were established at each port of embarkation in the United States and Canada. Storerooms, emergency hospitals, coffee plants, and kitchens were promptly built and completely equipped. Specially trained corps of women were organized for the work at the embarkation piers. The canteens were notified as each ship arrived in port. Canteen service in abundance was provided at every point of embarkation.

The signing of the armistice and the announcement of returning transports, with both wounded and well men, found the Red Cross canteens prepared, organized, and equipped to render valuable service. Enormous quantities of food, coffee, cigarettes, chocolate, and flowers were distributed, telegrams sent, postal cards mailed, and all kinds of service rendered. Canteens along the line of travel of the returned men were decorated and made ready to cheer the men on their homeward journey into the large debarkation camps.

The problem of receiving the returned wounded was promptly met. Through permission of the port surgeons, canteens were established on each of the harbor transfer boats and at every pier at which wounded men were to be received. The bureau of canteen service immediately put on traffic experts at each of the important ports and began cooperating with the Railroad Administration and the medical officers so that advance information was obtained of all movements of hospital trains or cars of sick and wounded men attached to regular trains. This information was immediately relayed to canteens along the lines of travel. Special hospital train time-tables and maps were prepared by the canteen bureau and supplied to each medical officer in charge of the men.


Several hundred specially selected women were appointed as canteen escorts, two of these women being placed on each hospital train leaving the debarkation hospitals, riding on the trains with the men during the daylight hours, to render every aid possible, and to see that the canteens along the line functioned effectively with the wishes of the commanding officers of the train. The canteens throughout the country organized canteen escort service, and each morning relays of escorts boarded the hospital trains at various points on the journey across the continent from debarkation hospitals to inland hospitals.

At the time of the signing of the armistice the problem of demobilizing the overseas men had to be faced. It was the privilege of the American Red Cross to perform the final acts of kindness and to express the appreciation of the American people to these men returning to civilian life. At all important junctions transfer hospitals, check rooms, recreation rooms, kitchens, and lodging quarters were opened to take care of the individual soldier who might find himself stranded in a big city. Many men missed their trains, took wrong trains, lost their money, were taken ill, and numerous other things happened to them. The canteens promptly met this situation, and rendered all manner of service as required. The stimulus of the excitement of winning the war had passed, but the women of the American Red Cross canteens stood by their posts and refused to leave them until the need had entirely passed and the last man was demobilized.

A welcome home roll was arranged by the canteens throughout the country. Each man was asked to register upon his arrival in his home, so that his name could be published in the papers for his friends to know of his safe arrival. His name and address were turned over to the home service section, which aided him in his domestic affairs and assisted him, if necessary, in securing employment.

The expenses of operating American Red Cross canteens in the United States and Canada were met by appropriations by the War Council; by appropriations by the chapters; by donations to the canteens.

The war council appropriated for this six months' period $250,000 for canteen work at embarkation and debarkation ports and for the general expenses of providing canteen service at important railroad junctions through-out the country. Expenditures under this appropriation amounted to$149,632.61 and were distributed as follows: 4



The cost of canteen service in the chapters amounted to $554,257.09, all of which was financed from chapter funds. The following table shows the distribution of expenses by divisions: 4


The value of supplies donated amounted to $193,604.225. The following table shows the distribution by division: 4


In addition to expenses incurred by the canteens for furnishing free service, supplies were purchased by the canteens on request of troop train officers to the total amount of $37,946.56. Reimbursement was made by troop train officers for these supplies.

Summary of expenses of canteen service is as follows: 4


Estimate of number of canteen services performed during 12 months' period ending December 31, 1918: 4



There were approximately 53,000 volunteer women workers in the American Red Cross canteens. No commercialism whatever was permitted to enter the work; no money changed hands between the individual soldiers and the canteen workers-all service was gratis. The record of the canteen bureau is a tribute to the efficiency, patriotism, and devotion to duty of the wonderful American women of whom its entire membership was composed. It was a woman's task, and the women of the country responded without hesitation and without limitation. It is believed that there was not a man in the service, soldier, sailor, or marine, in this great war who did not, at some time in his military career, partake of the hospitality of the American Red Cross canteen service or receive aid in some way from this bureau.


Long before the war the first-aid division of the American Red Cross engaged in the dissemination of instruction to the people of the United States, so that they could take better care of themselves in cases of minor injury, and in this way lessen the more serious results that so often follow the neglect of what may seem but trifles at the time. It was hoped that the services of trained nurses could be conserved and a great number released for the care of those wounded in battle. It was foreseen that enough trained nurses would not be obtained, and that it would be necessary to utilize the services of aides; hence, a training in first aid was considered a groundwork on which untrained women could build toward a larger knowledge of this work. On the theory that a little training properly given was better than none, thousands were induced to take the first-aid course. The majority of the graduates in first aid were intelligent, common-sense Americans, anxious to help in a work that needed assistance. The American Red Cross believed that first aid as taught in classes was well done, and that the graduates, when carefully selected as to fitness, would be of immense assistance to the Army Nurse Corps in caring for the sick and wounded in military hospitals. Under the supervision of the nurse in charge of the ward, these women could help in serving the diets in a tasty manner; they could be trained to make beds, to give baths, and to help the nurses in many of their routine duties.


The bureau of sanitary service was established in July, 1917, to give aid to Federal, State, and local authorities in procuring and maintaining effective sanitary control in the civil districts surrounding or adjacent to National Army cantonments, National Guard camps, and naval bases.,

Thirty-six sanitary units were established. The personnel of each unit consisted of director, United States Public Health officer (services paid by the United States Government); fiscal officer (services free) ; bacteriologist, sanitary inspectors, Red Cross trained nurses, all paid by the American Red Cross. The activities of the sanitary service included 4 supervision of public and private water supplies: proper disposal of human exereta; proper disposal of manure, garbage. all other wastes, especially to control fly breeding; proper control of food supplies. req during constant inspection of dairies, markets,


restaurants, and refreshment stands; direct control of all communicable diseases, with full and prompt report of all cases, and establishment of necessary isolation and cure; and vaccination against smallpox and typhoid.

One of the major problems was the prevention of malaria by the eradication of the anopheles mosquito, which was accomplished by draining pools and marshes, channeling water courses, and oiling all ponds of still water. People were urged to take quinine, and they were instructed to erect screened fly-proof privies. Wells were found adjacent to privies in thousands of yards. Open sewers were common. Butcher shops, with meat displayed on open counters, covered with flies, and filthy restaurants, springing up like mushrooms seeking the soldier trade, flourished near all the Army camps. When a reprimand from the director to the proprietors of these shops failed, a call for help to the adjacent division surgeon called forth the military police, with authority to stop any uniformed man attempting to enter an inspected and condemned eating establishment " out of bounds." The proprietors soon came to realize that there was to be no trade without cleanliness.

The Red Cross and the United States Public Health Service did not undertake to treat sick men in the Army camp; their field lay in keeping the people well who served the soldier and sailor, so that no contaminating disease might spread from city to camp. To further this idea and to meet what proved to be the greatest single source of soldiers' illnesses, 26 venereal clinics were established in as many cities where units existed. 4 These clinics were free and men with syphilis and gonorrhea flocked to them by the thousands. Fully 40,000 civilians were treated in these clinics. Salvarsan or arsphenamine was sent to the venereal specialists in charge of these clinics by the thousand doses. Isolation hospitals for venereal patients were established and maintained at Chattanooga, Tenn.; Newport News, Va.; Alexandria, La.; El Paso, Tex.:and Petersburg, Va. 4

The necessary authority to maintain health standards was vested in the United States Public Health official, the director of the unit, delegated to him by local, State, municipal, and county authorities, this condition having been made by the American Red Cross before they agreed to establish a unit. Funds to meet the requirements were almost totally lacking locally, so the Red Cross and the United States Public Health Service had to help. The standard of health throughout the Army camps was raised by the results accomplished by the sanitary units.


With the development of the Red Cross organization the efficiency of chapter workrooms increased so that by the end of 1917 it was evident that it would be possible to provide surgical dressings in almost any quantity needed. Therefore. after a conference between the Surgeons General of the Army and Navy, a plan of production was elaborated whereby the Government was to furnish the material and the Red Cross to make up the dressings needed by the military and naval services in accordance with specifications outlined. The first order for surgical dressings was received March 8, 1918; the total deliveries of surgical dressings to the Medical Department of the Army up to February 1, 1919, follows: 4



At the time the original agreement was entered into regarding surgical dressings, the Red Cross furnished the Medical Department of the Army with models of some of its hospital garments and supplies. The first order for these was for 1,350,000 pajamas, 500,000 operating gowns, 1,736,000 bed sheets, 170,000 convalescent robes. Up to February 1, 1919, the Red Cross had delivered the following quantities: 1


At the time the agreement was entered into it was the belief of the Medical Department and the Red Cross that a fairly even balance between the two, either for materials or for finished dressings, would be maintained. Because of unavoidable delays in securing material, however, and the fact that the Red Cross was able to make delivery of large quantities of finished articles from stocks made up for distribution through its own channels, the balance in favor of the Red Cross in material, according to agreement, kept increasing and had reached a very considerable sum by December 1, 1918. As Red Cross requirements for surgical dressings and hospital supplies, after the cessation of hostilities, could be met from stocks already on hand, negotia- tions were entered into with the Medical Department of the Army to secure a settlement of the balance in favor of the Red Cross by a cash payment rather than return of material, as originally agreed. Such a settlement was made.



The importance of the problem of the reconstruction of Americanwounded soldiers and sailors engaged the attention of the department of military relief soon after the declaration of war and an institute for the reeducation of cripples was started in New York City.4 In order to put the institute on a practical working basis, classes werebegun for cripples from civil life, and teachers were trained in the handlingof cripples. Various courses were inaugurated, 4 such as artificial limb making,drafting, operating moving-picture machines, using linotype and monotypemachines, oxyacetylene welding, stenography, and business courses. An employment bureau for the placement of cripples was established and surveys ofindustries made to find suitable employment for the disabled. The reconstruction problem was studied from all angles4 by collecting all the available information from the belligerent countries on the subject of rehabilitation, and the institute soon became an authoritative source for all who sought the latest information from abroad. In order to truthfully inform the American people as to the possibilities of reconstruction, a campaign of public education was initiated, approved by the Surgeon General.4 Posters, booklets, moving-picture slides with lectures, were utilized. A popular magazine, Carry On, was financed by the American Red Cross and edited by the Surgeon General, in which the problem was discussed in an intelligent way, so as to place it before the people.4


The Red Cross Institute for the Blind, organized in connection with the United States Army General Hospital No. 7, at Roland Park, Md., was originated for the purpose of guiding the work which the Red Cross wished to do for the benefit of American soldiers. 4

A suitable building, adjacent to the hospital, was secured as the head- quarters for the Red Cross work and as a convalescent recreation house for the blinded men.4 Additional quarters in the city of Baltimore were utilized as a home for the relatives of these men while visiting or taking the course of instruction to fit them as companions for their blinded husbands, brothers, or sons, it being considered essential that the blind man have a trained companion to guide him through his future darkness. 4 The relatives were trained to read and write Braille and to look after the blind man in every way. 4

The Red Cross Institute was able to add to the salaries of the trained teachers, so that those who could not afford to give their service for the salaries allowed by law could be secured. 4 No comprehensive survey of industry for the placement of the blind had ever been made, and as it was essential that information of this sort be obtained, the Red Cross employed expert industrial engineers to find out what industry could do for the blind, 4 so that the vocational training could be carried out along scientific and sensible lines. The results of these surveys demonstrated that blind men may be employed on many industries and, when properly trained, will render very satisfactory service. Through its volunteer workers the Red Cross Institute was able to provide enough teachers to give each man an individual teacher-an absolute necessity in such work as teaching Braille, and the use of the typewriter, and in training


the hands, as in weaving nets, baskets, hammocks, or in simple cabinetmakingand carpentry; also in training the ears, as in piano tuning. In all this workthe Red Cross was careful not to duplicate the work of the Medical Department.


(1) Act of Congress, approved April 24, 1912, 37 Stats. 90.
(2) Act of Congress, approved January 5, 1905, 33 Stats. 600.
(3) Special Regulations No. 61, October 8, 1917; G. O. No. 17, W. D., February 13, 1918.
(4) The American Red Cross Assistance to the United States Medical Department in the Unitd States, by Lieut. Col. C. H. Connor, M. C. On file, Historical Division, S. G. O.
(5) Annual Report of the Surgeon General, United States Army, 1916. 213.
(6) Memo. for Colonel Munson, September 4, 1917. Subject: Red Cross Ambulance Companie On file, Record Room, S. G. O., 171059 (Old Files).
(7) Shown on reports of organizations. On file, Record Room, S. G. O., Correspondence File, 322.3 (number of ambulances) (A).