Historical Nurses: A Timeline

By jlucius
  • Dorthea Dix

    Dorthea Dix
    Dix became the Union's Superintendent of Female Nurses during the Civil War in June 1861.
  • Linda Richards

    Linda Richards
    In 1873, Richards was the first professionally trained American nurse. She is credited with establishing nurse training programs and is also recognized for creating the first system for keeping individual medical records for hospitalized patients.
  • Mary Eliza Mahoney

    Mary Eliza Mahoney
    Mahoney is the first African American to graduate from a school of nursing in 1879.
  • Clara Barton

    Clara Barton
    Barton was the founder and President of the American Red Cross, which was founded on May 21, 1881.
  • Isabel Hampton Robb

    Isabel Hampton Robb
    One of her most notable contributions was the implementation of a grading policy for nursing students. In 1889, she became the first Superintendent of Nurses and Principal of the Training School at Johns Hopkins Hospital.
  • Lavinia Dock

    Lavinia Dock
    Dock compiled the first, and most important , manual of drugs for nurses, “Materia Medica for Nurses,” in 1890.
  • Margaret Sanger

    Margaret Sanger
    Sanger was a birth control activist. In October 1916, she opened the first family planning and birth control clinic.
  • Anna Goodrich

    Anna Goodrich
    In 1918, she became chief inspecting nurse of the United States Army's hospitals. Goodrich also had the plan for the Army school of nursing and was the dean when it started in 1918. She was the founder of the Yale School of Nursing and its first dean in 1923.
  • Mary Breckinridge

    Mary Breckinridge
    Breckenridge introduced a model rural health care system, known as the Frontier Nursing Service into the United States in 1925. In 1939 she started her own midwifery school.
  • Ida V. Moffett

    Ida V. Moffett
    In 1943 she organized Alabama's first unit of the Cadet Nurse Corps.
  • Hildegard Peplau

    Hildegard Peplau
    Peplau was known as the "mother of psychiatric nursing," Dr. Peplau emphasized the nurse-client "relationship" as the foundation of nursing practice and published her seminal work “Interpersonal Relations in Nursing” in 1952.
  • Virginia Henderson

    Virginia Henderson
    Henderson is famous for defining nursing in 1966 as “The unique function of the nurse is to assist the individual, sick or well, in the performance of those activities contributing to health or its recovery (or to peaceful death) that he would persom unaided if he had the necessary strength, will or knowledge.
  • Martha Rogers

    Martha Rogers
    Rogers is best known for developing the Science of Unitary Human Beings and her landmark book, An Introduction to the Theoretical Basis of Nursing in 1970.
  • Dorthea Orem

    Dorthea Orem
    Orem was one of the foremost nursing theorists in America. Nursing: Concepts of Practice was the first formal publication of her ideas in 1971.
  • Madeleine Leininger

    Madeleine Leininger
    She is known as "Margaret Mead of nursing" and is recognized worldwide as the founder of transcultural nursing, a program that she created in 1974
  • Jean Watson

    Jean Watson
    Watson created Watson Caring Science Institute in 2007 with the mission to restore natrure of caring-healing and support the current health care system to nurture and retain competent, caring professional nurses.