In And Out Of Harm's Way By Doris M. Sterner

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In And Out Of Harm's Way: A Navy Nurse Corps History By Captain Doris M. Sterner NC USN (Ret.)

Hardback (390 pages)

This book is the first comprehensive, chronological history of the Navy

Nurse Corps. The extensive literature is impressive, and affords future

researchers a wealth of resources from which to draw. In addition to

consulting articles, books, diaries, and letters, the author recorded

oral histories of many of the former directors and retired members of

the Corps. In 1798, Congress established the Navy Department. By

1800, twelve hospitals existed in the United States. Only men were

permitted to serve on the nation's early hospital ships. In 1814 a Navy

surgeon, Dr. William Barton, expressed the need for better organization

of ships' hospital resources and care for sick or injured seamen. He

advocated the enrollment of women as nurses. He further recommended that

nurses be included in the management and operation of hospitals, an

unheard-of extremist point of view for that era. The Navy Nurse Corps was established in 1908, but the nurses served without rank. In 1921, they were designated as Navy personnel. In 1942, Congress authorized Permanent Relative Rank for Navy nurses.The numerous stories derived from oral histories well demonstrate the nurses' extreme bravery, sacrifice, and dedication to duty, often under enemy fire. Of particular interest are accounts of those Navy nurses who served during World War II in Naval hospitals, on troop transports and hospital ships, and in both the European and Pacific theaters of operation. Wherever they were assigned, Navy nurses served with distinction, providing care of the highest quality to thousands of wounded servicemen who had suffered burns, loss of limbs, and other severe injuries. The author has provided a history of America's and the Navy's roles in wartime, from the Revolutionary War to the Persian Gulf. Navy nurses have been a significant part of this history.