Harriet Patience Dame (1815-1900) 2002 Inductee

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Harriet Dame
ANA Hall of Fame Inductee

Harriet Patience Dame's leadership, advocacy, innovation and expert ability to provide holistic care to the sick and wounded stands as a true testament to the nursing profession.

The Civil War nurse's advocacy led to a dramatic change in the way the military delivered health care. And she repeatedly rose to challenges presented to her no matter how monumental.

When Union General Joseph Hooker announced that all soldiers who could not walk to Harrison's Landing, VA, would be left behind to certain death, Dame first organized the sick and wounded so they could help each other during the 120-mile trek and later won space for them on wagons. Her leadership saved the lives of many.

A selfless caregiver, the New Hampshire native was appointed matron of the 18th Corps Hospital at Broadway, where for several months she served as the sole nurse. She also convinced the Surgeon General to ensure that every military boat had proper hospital accommodations, supplies and at least one surgeon on board.

She served as the second president of the Army Nurses Association, and because of her service, a Senate bill was introduced in the 48th Congress to provide pensions to nurses who worked on the battlefield or in hospitals during the Civil War.