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Inspirational Nursing Personalities


  • Lucy Seaman Bainbridge - (1842-1928): Mother, Civil War Nurse, Author, Missionary.
  • Clara Barton - Founder of the American Red Cross, considered the"Angel of the Battlefield,"
  • Daisy Bates -  lived among the Aboriginal people of north-western South Australia for thirty years.
  • Mary Ann Bickerdyke - Mother of the Union Army
  • Vivian Bullwinkle - was the sole survivor when the Japanese massacred 21 army nurses and one elderly civilian woman on Bangka Island.
  • M. Elizabeth Carnegie - has made significant contributions to the development of nursing as a profession, science and discipline.
  • Edith Cavell - Nurse spy, Christian and war hero. 
  • Caroline Chisholm - Caroline Chisholm was known as 'the emigrant's friend'. She earned this title for her work with poor migrants to Australia last century.
  • Dorothea Dix - education development among prisoners and the mentally ill
  • Ethel Fenwick - The first nurse on the world’s first Nursing Register. Founder - British Journal of Nursing in 1893. Founder and 1st president of the International council of Nurses.
  • Elizabeth Fry - pioneer nurse who devoted her life to causes such as prison reform.
  • Elizerbeth Kenny - In the fight against polio, a leader in the field was Elizabeth Kenny. Before the discovery of a vaccine for the disease, treatment was all but ineffectual.
  • Bergljot Larsson - Pioneer and leader of Norwegian nursing
  • Clara Louise Maass (1876-1901) - One of the USA's most courageous nurses, Clara Louise Maass lost her life during scientific studies to determine the cause of yellow fever
  • Mary Eliza Mahoney - Mary Eliza Mahoney was the first African-American registered nurse in the U.S.A.
  • Florence Nightingale - links to the life and work of nursing pioneer Florence Nightingale, including her contributions to mathematics
  • Adelaide M. Nutting - Honored for her outstanding contributions to nursing and nursing education, Mary Adelaide Nutting was a noted educator, historian, and scholar.
  • Lucy Osburn - sent to the Colony of NSW in 1868 by Florence Nightingale to take charge of the Infirmary. A true pioneer nurse.
  • Sophia French Palmer - was an influential nursing pioneer.
  • Georgina Fane Pope - Prince Edward Island's Georgina Fane Pope, one of Canada's pioneer Nursing Sisters, who served in the South African war, trained in New York City at Bellevue Hospital's ‘Nightingale School'.
  • Linda Richards - First trained nurse in the United States.- Born July 27, 1841, in Potsdam, New York; died April 16, 1930, in Grafton, Massachusetts.
  • Rufaidah bint Sa'ad - pioneer of nursing in Islam. She lived at the time of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) in the 1st century AH/8th century CE.
  • Margaret Sanger - Founder of the American birth control movement, a controversial personality of the early 20th Century.
  • Mary Jane Seacole - Mary Jane Seacole was a heroine of the Crimean War and a Jamaican nurse.
  • Mabel Keaton Stauper - She was an African-American leader in breaking down racial barriers in American nursing.
  • Marie Stopes - pioneer in the development of sexual and reproductive health
  • Susie King Taylor - Civil War teacher, nurse, and laundress; thereafter, a teacher and domestic worker
  • Sally Louisa Tompkins - Opened one of the most successful hospitals during the civil war, returning more of its patients to the ranks than any other medical care facility. She was the only woman to hold a commission in the Confederate States Army.
  • Sojourner Truth - (c. 1797 - 1883) Abolitionist born a slave who became a Quaker missionary. Truth eventually became a traveling preacher of great influence who worked in the antislavery movement. She learned about women's rights, and adopted that cause as well.
  • Lillian D Wald - was born March 10, 1867, also to a well-to-do family.  She became interested in nursing when her sister was ill and attended by a private duty nurse. 
  • Susie Walking Bear Yellowtail - the first American Indian graduate Registered Nurse, fully prepared to pursue her dream of dedicating her life to helping Native American peoples.


Last Modified: Thursday May 20, 2010

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