WWI Snapshots will begin on Monday, September 30, 2019

As we prepare for the book preserving the legacies of the WWI veterans of Brunswick County, a dedicated group is working to identify the dates of death and cemetery locations for all of the 725 veterans. Gwen Causey, Amy Eckard, Emma-Lou Edwards, Jane Freach, and Kathryn Kalmanson have contributed to this effort.

While gathering this data, some stories have emerged that must be shared. Photos have been uncovered. And additional stories have been shared by Kathryn Kalmanson, daughter of Susie Carson, the late historian and founder of the Southport Historical Society.

In order to preserve this valuable data, short snapshots are being prepared for the blog in the coming weeks. Some will only consist of a photo which was uncovered, while others will include a brief story of interest.

In addition, the list of veterans may grow or shrink as this research continues.

If anyone would like to share more information about a veteran for a snapshot, or contribute to the effort to identify the dates of death and cemetery locations, please contact the Friends of Fort Caswell Rifle Range. Thank you!

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WWI Fort Caswell Nurse Profile: Faye E. White 1894-1994

To view this or another nurse profile at any time, click the “WWI Profile” link beside the nurse’s name on Fort Caswell WWI Nurses, which is also accessible by the blue button on the top right of the webpage.
Faye Elmo White Henry
New Bethlehem, PA
Commander

Served:
WWI (Army Nurse Corps):
September 25, 1918 – June 21, 1919
WWII (US Navy):
September 17, 1921 – December 31, 1947
Fort Caswell, US Army Post Hospital:
September 25, 1918 – Feburary 12, 1919

Faye Elmo White was the most decorated and longest serving nurse among the WWI Fort Caswell nurses.

Faye Elmo White was born in New Bethlehem, PA, a small town about 60 miles NE of Pittsburgh. A family tree is located in FamilySearch.

In 1900, Faye, age 5, had one older brother and two younger siblings. Her father was a farmer. In 1910, there was an additional daughter, totaling five children in all. Faye and her younger siblings were attending school, while her older brother and father were farming. An additional son, Frank, was born within a year after the 1910 Census.

Faye attended the Allegheny General Hospital School of Nursing in Pittsburgh, PA, along with Anna M. Setley, another Fort Caswell nurse. The two women served together and remained friends for many years, as evidenced by Faye’s attendance at Anna’s funeral, shown in Anna’s WWI Profile post.

Faye’s Pennsylvania WWI Service Card shows she enlisted from Pittsburgh, serving at the Post Hospital at Fort Caswell, followed by the Base Hospital at Camp Lee in VA.

She was discharged on June 21, 1919. In 1920, she had returned home to New Bethlehem, Clarion County, PA. Her father was farming, and she was working as a nurse in general practice.

Faye joined the US Navy the following year, serving through WWII until 1947, when she retired at age 53.

The table below lists her service, based on many records and yet, still incomplete.

US Army Service
WWI
Age: 23 – 24
09/25/1918 – 06/21/1919
09/25/1918 Fort Caswell, NC
02/12/1919 Camp Lee, VA
06/21/1919 Discharge
US Navy Service Age: 25 – 41
09/17/1921 – 01/01/1936
1922 – 1924 Haiti
[Source: US Marine Corps Muster Rolls]
1925 US Naval Hospital, Brooklyn
[Source: 1925 NY Census]
1930 Navy Yard Mare Island Naval Res. CA
[Source: 1930 US Census]
1934 Canacao, Philippines
[Source: PA Veterans’ Compensation File]
US Navy Service
WWII
Age: 47
12/07/1941 – 12/31/1947 (Until Age 53)
02/11/1943 – 09/21/1944 Overseas
US Fleet Hospital #105, South Pacific
[Source: Application for WWII Compensation]
03/01/1944 Promoted to Commander
[Source: Military Register]
1944 Awarded the Bronze Star
12/1944 Sampson Naval Hospital, Chief Nurse
12/31/1947 Discharge, St Albans Naval Hospital
[Source: Application for WWII Compensation]

In 1934, her brother, WWI veteran Forest White, was struck by a car in Detroit and killed. He was laid to rest in New Bethlehem.

Forest C. White of Detroit, Mich., was killed by an automobile while crossing the street in front of his boarding house in Detroit. He was taken to the Receiving hospital where he died Thursday, July 5, 1934. Deceased was a son of John C. and Cora E. (Buzzard) White of Porter township. He was unmarried and was employed in Detroit. He was aged 36 years, 2 month and 22 days. Mr. White is survived by his parents, two brothers and three sisters, William White of Oak Ridge, Frank White of Porter township, Miss Faye White a nurse in the Philippine Islands, Mrs. Floyd Young of Cottage Hill and Mrs. Harold McNutt of Clarion. His body was shipped here and was taken to the home of his parents. Funeral services were held at the home Sunday, July 8, 1934, and were conducted by Rev. J.W. Fraser, D.D., pastor of the Presbyterian church. Interment was made in the New Bethlehem cemetery. He was a World War Veteran and was given a military funeral.
The Clarion Democrat (Clarion, PA), 19 July 1934, p. 2.

During WWII, she served in the US Fleet Hospital #105 in the South Pacific.

A story that appeared in The Pittsburgh Press on October 3, 1943, page 12, “Many Lives are Saved by a Pittsburgh MOB” (Navy Mobile Hospital Unit), described a unit of mostly Pittsburgh doctors serving in the South Pacific MOB.

“Working with the doctors for many months now has been a corps of Army nurses under Lt. Faye E. White of New Bethlehem, a veteran of 21 years in the Navy Nurse Corps.”

According to this 1949 military register, she was promoted to Commander on March 1, 1944. It is unclear why she is referred to as “Lt Commander” in newspaper articles after that time.

These photos were published in newspapers across the nation in 1944 when Commander Faye E White became the first Navy Nurse to receive the Bronze Star.

In 1945, newspapers across the nation used her image, age (51), and service to promote Liberty Loans.

From December 1944 until her retirement in 1947, she served stateside. She returned to New Bethlehem for the rest of her life, which as it turns out, was nearly 50 more years!

In 1954, she married Carl E. Henry, who had lost his wife a year earlier. They had 22 years together before his death in 1976.

In 1966, her mother passed away.

Mrs. Cora White, 95, Of New Bethlehem, Dies
New Bethlehem – Mrs. Cora Ellen White, 95, of New Bethlehem RD 3, died at 6:30 p.m. Monday after a three-month illness. She was the widow of John W. White.

She was born at Climax, Armstrong County, September 7, 1870, a daughter of Thomas and Margaret Delp Buzzard.

Her husband, John W. White, died in August 1939.

Mrs. White was a member of the First Baptist Church in New Bethlehem. She also was a member of the Sewing Club of Cottage Hill.

She is survived by three daughters, Mrs. Carl (Faye) Henry and Mrs. Pearl Young of New Bethlehem RD 3 and Mrs. Verlie McNutt of Clairon; a son, Frank A. White of New Bethlehem RD 3; 23 grandchildren, 55 great-grandchildren and 7 great-great-grandchildren, and a sister, Mrs. Pearl Sherrieb of Natrona Heights.

Two sons are deceased.

Friends will be received in the John E. Reiss Funeral Home in New Bethlehem after 7 p.m. today. Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Thursday in the funeral home with Rev. Rudolf Unger, pastor of the First Baptist Church in New Bethlehem, officiating.

Interment will be in the New Bethlehem Cemetery.
Oil City Derrick (Oil City, PA), 14 March 1966, p. 16.

In 1976, her husband passed away.

Carl Henry Dies At Age 84
New Bethlehem – Carl E. Henry, 84, of New Bethlehem RD 3, died Saturday in his home.

Born in Porter Township, Clarion County, February 1, 1892, he was the son of Elmer E. and Jane Smith Henry.

He was married November 3, 1954, to the former Faye White who survives.

Mr. Henry was a member of the First Baptist Church in New Bethlehem and the Murphy Grange.

Surviving along with his wife are two sons, Roland Henry of New Castle and Robert E. Henry of Clarion; a daughter, Mrs. John (Betty) Mooney of Clarion; six grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

One grandchild is deceased.

Also surviving are a brother, George E. Henry of New Bethlehem, and a sister, Mrs. Arthur (Ruth) Brown of Midway.

Funeral services will be held at 1 pm today in John R. Mateer Funeral Home in New Bethlehem, with Rev. David Skinner, pastor of the First Baptist Church, officiated. Interment will be in the New Bethlehem Cemetery.
Oil City Derrick (Oil City, PA), 31 May 1976, p. 24.

On Memorial Day 1993, Faye was honored, as detailed in this newspaper clipping saved by her family.

Local Veteran, 98, To Ride At Front Of Memorial Day Parade

Memorial Day is a day to remember loved ones who have served in the many wars our country has fought in. We have seen the desolation war can bring, we have known the heroes and heroines who defeated the enemy, and we have seen the trials and tribulations our ancestors have gone through to maintain world peace.

A woman of 98 sits in her Cottage Hill home to tell her story about her life in the military and to tell of all the transformations she has seen in past generations.

Faye Henry has been invited to be this year’s grand marshal for the annual Memorial Day Parade in New Bethlelem on Saturday, May 29.

“She has been chosen because she has served God and her country,” said Leroy Tabler, Henry’s longtime neighbor. “She is a unique individual. She is very kind, generous and cares about other people.”

“I’m surprised we haven’t had her sooner for our Memorial Day Parade,” said Jack Milliren, an organizer of the event.

Henry was active in the U.S. Army and Navy for 30 years and will be recognized at the parade for her talents as a nurse, war heroine and friend to her community.

Henry started her military nursing career of nursing in the Army after graduating from the nursing school at Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh. She entered the Army on Nov. 2, 1918, only a few days before the armistice of World War I was signed.

Her first service was at a hospital post in Fort Caswell, N.C., and at the base hospital for Camp Lee, Va. She was in the Army only for a brief period, but she earned a World War I Victory Medal. She ended her service on June 21, 1919.

At the time, she didn’t think about getting back into the military because she didn’t like the way the army treated her. Her military career would have ended if a friend didn’t talk her into rejoining the military, a branch other than the Army.

[Based on previous research which showed a close relationship beginning with her nursing training in Pittsburgh, it is possible that former Fort Caswell nurse Anna Setley is the friend who encouraged Faye to try the US Navy.]

“I had a hard time adjusting to the Army, so I got out,” she said. “I never thought I would get back in until a close friend who was in the Navy told me what a wonderful service the Navy was, so I decided to try it out.” On Sept. 16, 1921, she as appointed as a nurse in the U.S. Navy and by April 1, 1936, she was promoted to chief nurse. As the United Stated became embroiled in World War II, Henry’s abilities were recognized when she was commissioned lieutenant in the Nurse Corps.

“I remember them bringing back casualties and spending several months in the wards taking care of wounded men,” she said. As she became more dedicated to nursing, she moved up in rank.

By Oct. 1, 1944, she again was promoted to lieutenant commander. Before she retired, she became full commander in charge of nurses at her station. During her career, she directed the establishment of several hospitals while in the Pacific Theater during World War II.

For serving in World War I and World War II, she received Medals of Honor for her active nursing career. In November 1944, at New Caledonia, Faye Henry became the first woman officer to receive a Bronze Star. She was awarded this honor as a result of all her accomplishments in World War II. The medal was awarded to her in the South Pacific by Vice-Admiral John Henry Newton. The citation read:

“For the meritorious service in the government of the United States while serving as chief nurse of a fleet hospital in the South Pacific area from June 29, 1943 to August 30, 1944. During this period, Lieutenant White displayed exceptional ability and worked tirelessly in the indoctrination and training of nurses and hospital corpsmen under supervision. Through her professional skill and through knowledge of the personnel problems involved in hospital administration, she rendered invaluable assistance to the Force Medical Officer in assignment of nurses to other hospitals in the South Pacific. Her initiative and skillful leadership were an inspiration to the officers and men with whom she came in contact and were keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.”

Some of her other accomplishments were American Defense, Asiatic-Pacific Theater and World War II Victory awards.

She served a total of 30 years and two months in the service. “It was worth being in the military all those years. I always liked to help people,” she said.

After her service to her country, she returned to her native land of New Bethlehem, where she met her husband, Carl Henry. Faye never had any children of her own, but she’s become a stepmother to Carl’s three children.

Henry was in her early 60s when she was married for the first time. “In the Navy, you couldn’t marry or you were automatically out of the service,” she said. Of course this rule has now changed.

She said there have been other changes since she has served in the Navy. “Nursing has changed; there is so much paperwork and not as much nursing nowadays… The old Navy discipline changed after Pearl Harbor. The discipline went down because of the draft. We had people who didn’t want to be there, so they didn’t want to be disciplined.”

She also thinks there have been changes with the role of the working woman. “I worked but didn’t have a family to take care of. I don’t know how women can keep a family and job. I believe they shouldn’t work if they have families,” Henry said.

Not only has there been a change in the U.S. Navy, but she also believes there has been a change in society.

“There have been changes in morals and living. There is too much violence and crime and robbery. There are also wars all over the world that have been caused by violence,” said Henry.

She has seen the world change and New Bethlehem change. She has been an influence in our town and to the people who lived here.

Tabler said, “A minister once said, ‘God won’t have to do much with her to make her an angel.’ This is the way I feel about Faye.”

Henry has honored her country, and now we are honoring her as she becomes a living memory of the past for our celebration of the Memorial Day Parade.
Huffman, Debbie. “Local Veteran, 98, To Ride At Front of Memorial Day Parade.” Leader-vindicator (New Bethlehem, PA), 26 May 1993, p. 1

In November 1993, she and two other WWI veterans from Clarion County were honored on the 75th anniversary of WWI.

Frank Whitlinger and Faye passed away in 1994, while Charles Whited lived to age 101, passing away in 1998. (His mother lived to age 109!)

Veterans
A ceremony marking the 75th anniversary of World War I was held in November. Honored were Clarion County’s three surviving veterans of the war: Faye White Henry of New Bethlehem, who served in the Army during World War I and later enlisted in the Navy; Charles Whited, a Clarview resident who served in France with the Marine Corps; and Frank Whitlinger, also of Clarview, who served with the Army Corps of Engineers.

Representatives of area American Legion posts and Veterans of Foreign Wars posts, joined Paul Lieberum, director of Clarion County Veterans Affairs, in conducting the ceremony. The veterans received commemorative medals, replicas of the Victory Medal which was presented to those who served in World War I.

Family members brought uniforms, medals, bayonets and pictures for display at the program. The original Victory Medal and 75th anniversary medal owned by Mr. Whitlinger are displayed in the lobby at the nursing home. Clarview presented each veteran with a video and portfolio of photos of the program.
Franklin News Herald (Franklin, PA), 18 Feb 1994, p. E-10.

Faye Elmo White Henry passed away on July 25, 1994. A newspaper clipping of her obituary was saved by her family.

Decorated Navy Nurse, 99, Dies At Her Cottage Hill Home

A local woman who was the recipient of the first Bronze Star ever awarded to a U.S. Navy nurse died Monday afternoon, July 25, 1994, at her home in Cottage Hill at the age of 99.

Faye E. Henry of New Bethlehem RD 3 received the medal in 1944 for meritorious service to the U.S. Government during World War II. She had been appointed to the U.S. Navy Nurse Corps in September 1921, where she served until December 31, 1947. She was also awarded the Asiatic-Pacific Theater Medal, the World War II Victory Medal, and a commendation from President Harry Truman for Outstanding Service.

A 1916 graduate of Allegheny General Hospital School of Nursing in Pittsburgh, she also served in the U.S. Army Nurse Corps from September 1918 to June 1919 and was awarded the World War I Victory Medal and American Defense Medal.

She resigned on March 20, 1950, with the rank of commander in the U.S. Navy Nurse Corps.

Born December 6, 1894, in Porter Township, she was the daughter of John and Cora (Buzzard) White.

She married Carl E. Henry on November 3, 1954, in New Bethlehem. He preceded her in death on May 29, 1976.

Mrs. Henry was a longtime and devoted member of First Baptist Church in New Bethlehem and was active in various organizations.

She was a member of Walter W. Craig Post 354, American Legion.

She is survived by three stepchildren, Roland C. Henry of New Castle, Elizabeth A. Mooney of Clarion and Robert E. Henry of Clarion; six step-grandchildren, six step-great-grandchildren, and numerous nieces and nephews.

In addition to her husband and parents, she was preceded in death by three brothers, William, Forest and Frank White; two sisters, Verlie E. McNutt and Elsie Pearl Young; a step-grandson, Terry Henry; and two step-great-grandchildren.

Friends and relatives will be received from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. today (Wednesday) at the Charles D. Alcorn Funeral Home in Hawthorn.

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. tomorrow (Thursday) at First Baptist Church in New Bethlehem. Additional viewing will be held from 10 a.m. to the time of the 11 a.m. funeral home. The Rev. Terry Tareila, pastor, will officiate.

Entombment will follow in the mausoleum in New Bethlehem Cemetery.

She was laid to rest with her husband and several family members in New Bethlehem.

If you would like to help us honor Faye Elmo White Henry or another Brunswick County WWI veteran, please use the following links:

Click here for the announcement: Announcement: Honor a Brunswick County World War I Veteran
Click here for directions to donate and honor a veteran: How to Honor a Brunswick County World War I Veteran

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WWI Fort Caswell Nurse Profile: Ida E. Trollinger 1892-1975

To view this or another nurse profile at any time, click the “WWI Profile” link beside the nurse’s name on Fort Caswell WWI Nurses, which is also accessible by the blue button on the top right of the webpage.

Source: findagrave
Ida Estelle Trollinger
Durham, NC (registered in Baltimore)
Army Nurse Corps

Served:
March 23, 1918 – January 29, 1919
Fort Caswell, US Army Post Hospital:
March 23, 1918 – January 29, 1919

Ida Estelle Trollinger was born and raised in Caswell County, NC, which is north of Burlington near the Virginia border. There is a family tree in FamilySearch.

In 1900, there were eight children, all living, ranging from infant to 14. Ida was 8 years old. Her father was a farmer.

In 1910, three more children had been born, two passed away: Sadie Gertrude, age 2; and Laura Myrtle, age 19 . Her mother would have one more in 1911, for a total of twelve, ten living. Ida was 17 years old. One of her older sisters, Ann Elizabeth, was a teacher at a public school.

From 1915-1917, Ida was listed in the Durham City Directories as a nurse at Watts Hospital. Stories about her graduation were found in newspapers from Durham and Raleigh ( News and Observer (Raleigh, NC), 20 May 1917, p. 6.)

Source: “Nine Nurses to Graduate.” Durham Morning Herald (Durham, NC), 17 May 1917, p. 7.

The Durham Morning Herald story above included the following information.
Of the nine nurses who will graduate tomorrow, five have indicated their intention of entering the service of the American Red Cross and will contribute their quota to the efforts of the United States to successfully prosecute plans for termination of the world war and the bringing about of a permanent peace.

Nurse Trollinger did join the effort. She entered the Army Nurse Corps from Maryland. Despite spending her entire life in North Carolina, she has been recorded as a Maryland nurse. Her WWI service consisted of the post hospital at Fort Caswell until her honorable discharge on January 23, 1919 .

WWI Service Card from MD
Name: Ida E Trollinger
Gender: Male
Race: White
Age: 25
Birth Date: 30 Oct 1892
Birth Place: Leasburg, N.C.
Residence Place: 1413 Park Ave., Baltimore
Military Year: 1917-1919
Military Place: Maryland, USA
Comments: ANC 3/23/18 nurse, Post Hosp Ft Caswell N.C., Hon disch 1/23/19
Maryland in the World War 1917-1919; Military and Naval Service Records, Volumes I & II

Ida’s brother, Cpl Thomas Trollinger, enlisted in 1914 and served in WWI. After the war, he moved to CA, living in San Diego in 1920. He worked in the oil industry, married Clara Alice MacRae, had two daughters, Norma and Lillian, and passed away in 1938 in Los Angeles.

Nurse Trollinger was listed in the Fayetteville City Directory of 1919 as a nurse at Highsmith Hospital.

In 1920, Ida was back with her family, who now lived in Alamance County. Her parents were still living; five children lived at home. Ida was employed as a nurse in a hospital. Her father’s employment is illegible.

Her name appears in numerous Raleigh City Directories, beginning in 1926. In 1931 she was listed as a Wake County City Nurse, living in downtown Raleigh.

From 1934-1960, until age 68, she is listed as a nurse or superintendent at the infirmary for NC State College, living close to or on campus. The 1938 NC State Yearbook lists her on the faculty page.

In 1940, RN Ida Trollinger lived at 922 Johnson St, Raleigh. She had a roommate, an elementary school teacher, Ethyl D. Burks.

Ida Estelle Trollinger passed away in Rex Hospital, Raleigh, on September 11, 1975, at age 82. The cause of death was acute septicemia with complication from pulmonary embolism and GI bleeding.

She was laid to rest in Raleigh, with a military flat marker, shown at top.

If you would like to help us honor Ida Estelle Trollinger or another Brunswick County WWI veteran, please use the following links:

Click here for the announcement: Announcement: Honor a Brunswick County World War I Veteran
Click here for directions to donate and honor a veteran: How to Honor a Brunswick County World War I Veteran

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WWI Fort Caswell Nurse Profile: Hazel F. Sweetland 1892-1982

To view this or another nurse profile at any time, click the “WWI Profile” link beside the nurse’s name on Fort Caswell WWI Nurses, which is also accessible by the blue button on the top right of the webpage.

Photo Source: Liddick, Betty. “Musical Interlude for Senior Citizens.” The Los Angeles Times, 16 Feb. 1972, p. 61.
Hazel Frances Sweetland Alexander
Cambridge, MA
Army Nurse Corps

Served:
October 11, 1918 – March 5, 1919
Fort Caswell, US Army Post Hospital:
October 11, 1918 – March 5, 1919 assumed

Hazel Sweetland was born and raised in Derry, New Hampshire, a town 41 miles north of Boston. A family tree is located in FamilySearch.

In 1900, the family had four children, all living. Hazel, age 8, was the youngest daughter. Her father was a shoe finisher.

In 1910, they lived in Danvers, Massachusetts, 20 miles NE of Boston. Another daughter had been born since the last census. She is listed as born in New Hampshire and is seven years old, which helps to narrow down the date of their move.

Their father is listed as a life insurance agent. Hazel’s two older sisters were employed. One was an order clerk at a leather company and the other was a stenographer at an electric supply company. Hazel was 18 years old.

[Source: Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA]

The 1911 City Directory lists the employed Sweetland family. Hazel is listed as a clerk, working in Salem (S.). Her sisters were working in the towns of Peabody (Pea.) and Boston (B.). Her father, James M., was working in Danvers.

The 1912 City Directory shows the only son, Louis, listed as a clerk in Salem, while Hazel was listed as a student.

In the 1914 City Directory, Hazel is listed in the “Nurse” listing. There are approxmately 300 nurses listed in the directory, which includes Salem and the surrounding towns. She is also listed as a nurse in the Cambridge City Directory, years 1913 and 1914, with the address as 305 Charles River Rd. That was the address of Charlesgate Hospital in Cambridge.

Nurse Sweetland enlisted in the Army Nursing Corps in 1918. She served at Fort Caswell Post Hospital. [Source: The American Journal of Nursing, Vol. 19, No. 3 (Dec., 1918), pp. 220, excerpt shown below]

The only official record found that shows the date she enlisted and was discharged is her listing in the VA Master Index. Those dates are shown in the header of this profile: Enlisted on October 11, 1918, and discharged on March 5, 1919. There are no additional assignment announcements in the nursing journals, so she probably remained at Fort Caswell during the length of her service.

Hazel’s brother Louis served in WWI in the newly formed Aero Squadron. (https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/133225396)

Another interesting fact about Hazel is that she registered to vote in 1920, immediately after women won the right.

On September 25, 1922, Hazel married Louis Marden Alexander, a widowed 46 year old in sales for Tetley Tea. He had a child from his previous marriage. The 1930 and 1940 Census show that they remained in Massachusetts.

Her husband passed away in 1953 and was laid to rest beside his first wife, Helen Dawson Alexander, in a cemetery in Massachusetts.

There are few records available online detailing Hazel’s life: No WWI Service Record, obituary, death certificate, findagrave entry, nor headstone photo was found. However, this delightful feature article was discovered in The Los Angeles Times from 1972.

Musical Interlude for Senior Citizens

When Hazel Alexander was in her 20s in Marblehead, Mass., she listened to Saturday afternoon opera on the radio. When she was married, she went to Arthur Fiedler concerts at the esplanade in Boston.

Now almost 80, widowed and alone, she says, “What’s the sense of staying in?” Mrs. Alexander dresses to Cole Porter music from the radio in her Wilshire District apartment – occasionally yelling “Shut up!” at noisy commercials – and busses to a matinee of the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Music Center.

There, half an hour before the box office opens at 10 a.m., she joins the crowd that has gathered. The appeal is twofold: beautiful music and the lure of an irresistible bargain – special $1 tickets for senior citizens.

[story continues with details about the concerts, then resumes below]

She’s alive and full of fun without being a character. She winks when you ask about widowhood, “Going to find me a husband?”

In her checkered wool suit and green and blue striped blouse and a dashing gold-knit hat, Mrs. Alexander is a standout in the audience.

She settles down in Row G and explains she comes to every concert in this series. “I sat in the balcony last time but like it better down here. I like to see the musicians.”

She remembers music from other times, but isn’t one to wallow in memories nor worry about the future. “I don’t have any plans for tomorrow. I’m living today.”

“I’ve always loved music,” she goes on, her blue eyes shining behind rimless glasses, “but I have no talent. We always had a piano at home.”

She and her husband Louis, who worked for Tetley Tea, used to drive from Newton to Boston for opera. “My husband loved the opera,” she says.

Her taste encompasses any music that’s happy. “It does something for me.”

When the concert begins, she folds her hands in her lap and listens to Mozart’s Symphony No. 33. “Oh, isn’t that nice?” she says about the symphony one critic called sunny. It’s her kind of music.

When a piano is wheeled out for soloist John Browning for Prokofieff’s Second Piano Concerto, she sighs, “Oh, I love that.” But the concerto, in a minor key and full of percussion, is not entirely to her liking.

“It’s a cultivated taste, The more you hear, the more you like it. Imagine being able to write music like that!” But today’s wasn’t the uplifting kind she prefers. “This wasn’t harmonious,” she says about the program, including Dvorak’s Sixth Symphony. “I was thrilled to bits with last time’s Mozart.”

Still, this has been a good afternoon. Mrs. Alexander talks about her life, her career as an Army nurse, her first trip to Los Angeles in 1919.

She keeps on the go, swimming every warm day at the Ambassador Hotel or attending public meetings there. She rides the bus on her RTD pass to Santa Monica to a favorite restaurant for scallops. She says she enjoys life, but has no relatives here and worries about becoming ill alone.

Joining the crush of people streaming out into the sun, she reflects, “Nothing keeps me here but the music and the Music Center.” And she’s off, walking up Grand Ave., to her bus stop.
Liddick, Betty. “Musical Interlude for Senior Citizens.” The Los Angeles Times, 16 Feb. 1972, p. 61.

Hazel Alexander enjoyed over ten more years of life, hopefully full of music. She passed away on November 16, 1982, at age 90.

If you would like to help us honor Hazel Frances Sweetland Alexander or another Brunswick County WWI veteran, please use the following links:

Click here for the announcement: Announcement: Honor a Brunswick County World War I Veteran
Click here for directions to donate and honor a veteran: How to Honor a Brunswick County World War I Veteran

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WWI Fort Caswell Nurse Profile: Anna M. Setley 1889-1972

To view this or another nurse profile at any time, click the “WWI Profile” link beside the nurse’s name on Fort Caswell WWI Nurses, which is also accessible by the blue button on the top right of the webpage.

Source: Findagrave
Anna Mary Setley
Pittsburgh, PA
Army Nurse Corps
US Navy

Served:
September 25, 1918 – April 11, 1919
September 17, 1921 – January 1, 1936
Fort Caswell, US Army Post Hospital:
September 25, 1918 – Feburary 13, 1919

Anna Mary Setley was born in Starr, PA, a small community about 130 miles NE of Pittsburgh. There is a family tree in FamilySearch. The Findagrave entry for the family is completely populated also.

In 1900, her father was listed as a stonemason. There were ten children. Anna, 11 years old, was the sixth. One daughter had died previously. Three more children would be born, for a total of fourteen, thirteen living, confirmed by the 1910 Census.

Her life is discovered from many documents. It also matches closely with another nurse who served at Fort Caswell during WWI: Faye Elmo White.

In 1910, Anna was not included with her family. One possibility is this 1910 Census, which shows a Mary Sittay working as a waitress at a hotel not too far from her family’s home.

By 1918, when she began her military service, she had graduated from Allegheny General Hospital School of Nursing in Pittsburgh, PA, as written in her obituary shown below. Her PA WWI Service Card shows she served at Fort Caswell, followed by Fort Lee, VA.

Three brothers (Charlie, Harold, and Roy) of her 12 siblings served overseas during WWI. Two were wounded. In addition, one older sister (Ida) became a nurse, although there’s no indication she entered the military.

After her discharge in April 1919, no records were found to describe her activities until 1921, when she enlisted in the US Navy. She served until January 1936. The table below lists many of the locations from various historical documents.

1922 – 1924 Haiti
[Source: US Marine Corps Muster Rolls]
1925 US Naval Hospital, Brooklyn
[Source: 1925 NY Census]
1928 US Naval Hospital, Norfolk
[Source: 1928 Norfolk City Directory]
1930 Navy Yard Mare Island Naval Res. CA
[Source: 1930 US Census]
1934 Canacao, Philippines
[Source: PA Veterans’ Compensation File]

In 1940, Mary, age 50, was living at home with her mother and several siblings. In 1945,  a Nurse Anna M. Setley is shown in the NYC City Directory. Between 1947 and 1950, City Directories for Ansonia, CT, show a Nurse Anna M. Setley employed at Laurel Heights State Tuberculosis Sanatorium.

Anna Mary Setley passed away on May 17, 1972. The following obituaries were found.

Anna M. Setley was Navy nurse
Miss Anna Mary Setley, 82, of 154 Atlantic Ave., died at 8:15 p.m. Sunday in the Franklin Hospital.

She was born in Tionesta Aug. 18, 1889, the daughter of Winfield and Elizabeth Thompson Setley.

Miss Setley was a member of the Free Methodist Church and the Mission Society of the church.

She enlisted as an Army nurse in September 1918, after graduating from Allegheny General Hospital School of Nursing. She was discharged from the Army in April of 1919.

On Sept. 15, 1921, she enlisted as a Navy nurse. She served with the Navy until her discharge on Jan. 1, 1936.

Surviving are two sisters, Katherine Setley of Franklin, with whom she made her home, and Mrs. Vernon (Nina) Johnson of Erie.

Preceding her in death were five brothers, Harold, Roy, Sylvester, Ralph and Charley, and five sisters, Dora and Ida Setley, Mrs. Maude Brady, Mrs. Rida Henderson and Mrs. Helena Goodnow.

Friends may call anytime after 7 p.m. Today at the Leverne L. Burger Funeral Home, where the family will receive friends from 7 to 9 p.m. Today and from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. Tuesday.

Services will be held in the funeral home at 2 p.m. Wednesday. The Rev. Adolph Steed, pastor of the Free Methodist Church, will officiate. Interment will be in Starr Cemetery in Forest County.

In lieu of flowers the family requests that contributions be made to a favorite charity.
“Anna M. Setley was Navy nurse.” The News-Herald (Franklin, PA), 15 May 1972, p. 24.

Miss Anna Setley
Funeral services were held at 2 p.m. Wednesday in the Leverene L. Burger Funeral Home for Miss Anna Mary Setley, 82, 154 Atlantic Ave.

Miss Setley, a retired U.S. Navy nurse who served in World War II [WWI], died Sunday in the Franklin Hospital.

The Rev. Adolph Steed, pastor of the Franklin Free Methodist Church, officiated. He read the hymns, “Safe in the Arms of Jesus” and “I Won’t Have to Cross Jordan Alone” and the 23rd Psalm.

Interment was in the Starr Cemetery, Forst county. Pallbearers were Robert and Harold Parkhurst, Johnny Setley, Lee and Linn Reynolds and Mark Ives.

At the cemetery, the flag was presented to Miss Setley’s sister, Miss Katherine Setley.

Attending from a distance were Mr. and Mrs. Glenn Goodenow, Harold Parkhurst, Mr. and Mrs. Robert Parkhurst, Mr. and Mrs. Lewis Orton and Mrs. Gerald Beeman of North East; Mr. and Mrs. Mark Ives of Sherman, N.Y.; John Setley of Rochester, N.Y.; Mr. and Mrs. O.V. Johnson of Erie; Mr. and Mrs. Vorman Reynolds, Townville; Mr. and Mrs. Harvey Brady, Slippery Rock; Harvey Brady and Mrs. Hazel Albaugh, Starr; and Mr. and Mrs. Fay Henry and sister of New Bethlehem.
The News-Herald (Franklin, PA), 18 May 1972, p. 28.

In the obituary above, it shows that Mrs. Fay Henry was present at her funeral. Faye White Henry was also a WWI Fort Caswell nurse. Anna trained and served with Faye for many years and apparently remained friends.

Nurse Anna was laid to rest with her family in Starr Cemetery, in PA. Her service in the Navy is written on her headstone, as shown at top.

If you would like to help us honor Anna Mary Setley or another Brunswick County WWI veteran, please use the following links:

Click here for the announcement: Announcement: Honor a Brunswick County World War I Veteran
Click here for directions to donate and honor a veteran: How to Honor a Brunswick County World War I Veteran

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WWI Fort Caswell Nurse Profile: Lois Mills 1894-1971

To view this or another nurse profile at any time, click the “WWI Profile” link beside the nurse’s name on Fort Caswell WWI Nurses, which is also accessible by the blue button on the top right of the webpage.
Charlotte Lois Mills Herbert
Charlotte, NC
Army Nurse Corps
2nd Lieutenant

Served:
August 9, 1918 – April 17, 1922
Fort Caswell, US Army Post Hospital:
August 9, 1918 – November 15, 1918
Overseas:
November 15, 1918 – August 30, 1919

There are few historical records for the name “Lois Mills,” other than her NC WWI Service Card. Her name was found in newspapers in the Charlotte area while working as a nurse, but nothing after the war. Without knowing the location of her family, one avenue of tracing her life was unavailable. Without that link, it’s difficult to confirm any found “Lois Mills” is the Fort Caswell Nurse Lois Mills.

This required a different approach: use later records and work back to her family. Fortunately, online VA records exist for those who served in WWI, which made it possible to discover her married name. After an extensive search, finding the trail leading back to her family ultimately required only two records.

The WWI VA Index shows her married name, Herbert.

Then her marriage certificate was located.

Her parents’ names were on the certificate, so at that point it was fairly simple to find the census records and information about them.

Her birth name was then discovered: Charlotte Lois “Lottie” Mills or from the 1900 Census, “Lottie L Mills.”

Charlotte Lois “Lottie” Mills was born on June (or July) 1894 in Statesville, NC. There is a partial family tree in FamilySearch. Her mother’s death likely occurred that year, possibly during childbirth, as her mother was 41 years of age in 1894. This cannot be confirmed, but her mother’s death did occur before 1900 as shown below.

On August 1, 1900, her father died, leaving 11 children. Three were married; eight still lived at home. Lottie, as the youngest at age 5, appears to have been lost to history. No family trees include her beyond the 1900 Census. Obituaries of family members are typically used to establish a relationship but Lottie was not listed in any obituaries found for her ten siblings who all passed away before her.

The 1900 Census, completed on June 16 before her father’s death in August, shows her father, a farmer, with eight children living at home. As mentioned, Lottie was the youngest, age 5. When her father passed away two months after the census, the following was published in the local newspaper.

Mr. Joseph Mills Dead
Mr. Joseph Mills died at his home near here Saturday night. Interment Sunday afternoon at Perth cemetery, with funeral services by Rev. W.Y. Love. Deceased was 51 years old and was a good man. He leaves 11 children. Of this number three are married and the others are left at home parentless. Mr. Mills had been sorely afflicted for a long time. He had overworked himself in trying to do his full duty by his motherless little ones and no doubt the cares and anxieties concerning them did much to shorten his days. Yet he was faithful unto death and has gone to claim the reward.
“Mr. Joseph Mills Dead.” Statesville Record and Landmark (Statesville, NC), 10 Aug. 1900, p. 2.

Lottie’s brother, who was 9 years old when their father died, was presumably located in 1910 as a hired man living with a married couple. But between 1900, when they became orphans, until 1910, it is not known if they lived in an orphanage or were taken in by other families or relatives.

In 1910, Lottie, age 15-16, was a nurse in Charlotte, NC, at Mercy Hospital. The 1910 Charlotte City Directory has her name listed as Lottie Mills.

In 1911, she was listed as a trained nurse in the Charlotte City Directory.

The article below lists “Lois Mills” as a graduate of Mercy General Hospital in 1912. The 1912 City Directory of Charlotte listed “Lois Mills” as a nurse and she no longer lived at the hospital. A few Fort Caswell WWI nurses used different names as a nurse. With many women having the same popular names, they may have been advised to choose a less common name.

Catholic Hospital Training School

First Graduation Exercises at New Mercy General – One Graduate Miss Avis Hardin of Chester, S.C. – Bishop Haid Presents Diploma – Address of Dr. Wylie Moore Read.

The graduating exercises of the nurses’ training school at the new Mercy General hospital were held last evening at the hospital, the exercises being attended by many friends of the institution.

Miss Avid Hardin of Chester, S.C., was the only graduating nurse this year. She was presented with a class pin and a diploma, by Right Rev. Bishop Leo Haid [illegible] S.B. of Belmont, the presentation being accompanied by a happily expressed speech. Bishop Haid also read the prepared speech of Dr. Wylie Moore, who was to have been orator for the occasion but who was prevented by professional duties from being present. The address was considered masterly in thought and expression.

In honor of the occasion the hospital building was decorated in blue and white, the hospital colors, while potted palms and ferns added very much to the decorative effect.

The flower-bearers for Miss Hardin last evening were little Misses Elizabeth Williams, Helen [illegible], Frances Williams and Bernadine Toomey. The young ladies of the convent school served refreshments during the evening, and following the completion of the graduation exercises. Those serving were misses Mary O’Neill, Thelma Phelan, Frances Williams and Alma Moody.

Alumnae Assocation.
During the evening the Alumnae Association of Graduate Nurses of the Mercy General hospital was formed. Miss Josephine Finch of the class of 1908, was elected president of the new organization, Mrs. W.W. Scholtz, formerly Miss Bessie Drye, class of 1913, vice president; Mrs. Warren Vines Hall, formerly Miss Sarah Branigan of the class of 1912, was made secretary-treasurer. The other members of the organization are Miss Lois Mills, class of 1912, Miss Sara Shirley, class of 1913, Miss Josephine Watt, class of 1913, Miss Rosa Downey, class of 1915, and Miss Avis Hardin, class of 1916.

The Piedmont orchestra furnished music for the occasion.
“Catholic Hospital Training School.” The Charlotte News (Charlotte, NC), 31 May 1916, p. 2.

“State License for Eighteen Nurses.” The Charlotte News (Charlotte, NC), 21 May 1918, p. 8 begins with the following.

Eighteen nurses, graduates of the six training schools for nurses in local hospitals and sanitariums, have successfully passed examinations before the state board at Raleigh for licenses to practice the profession of graduate nursing in the state, the state licenses being presented yesterday to the young women who have completed their three years’ training in the hospitals of Charlotte.

The Charlotte nurses passing the state board examinations and receiving licenses to practice graduate nursing in North Carolina are as follows:

Misses Lily Dearman, Ella Dorsett, Bertha Smith, Clara Ashcraft, Mary Dilling, Frankie Wilson, Duseka Alford, Ellie May Warlick, Eva Ailson, Mattie Helm, Lois Mills, Mary Walton, Florence Corriher, Elizabeth Mauney, Henrietta McDade, Helen Miller, Johanna Treiber, and Kathryn Stowe.

Nurse Mills was now qualified to join the war effort. Her military service began in August.

Details of her US Army service may be found on her NC WWI Service Card, shown at top, and is listed below in table form for easier reading. Her military service is not detailed after December 1919, although she remained in the service until April 1922. Some details were found in other records.

08/09/1918 Fort Caswell, NC
11/15/1918 Base Hospital #113 (France)
01/1919 Base Hospital #88 (France)
08/30/1919 Demobilization Station
11/15/1918 – 08/30/1919 Overseas
10/11/1919 Army Nurse Corps
1920 Fort Bayard, NM (assumed)
1921 Fort Bliss, TX
04/17/1922 Discharge

While serving at Fort Caswell, Nurse Mills suffered from influenza. This appeared in the newspaper in Charlotte.
Source: “Miss Mills Recuperating.” The Charlotte Observer (Charlotte, NC), 6 Oct. 1918, p. 14.

Before Nurse Mills served in the military, she was a private nurse for Mrs. James McCausland in Charlotte and lived in her home. Mrs. McCausland was listed as Nurse Mills’ next of kin when she traveled overseas to France.


Source: Ancestry.com. U.S., Army Transport Service, Passenger Lists, 1910-1939 [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2016.

A Nurse Lois Mills is listed in the Fort Bayard, NM, 1920 Census and is assumed to be WWI Nurse Lois Mills, but there are no other records to confirm it.

Nurse Mills served at Fort Bliss, Texas for a short time before she was discharged. [Source: The American Journal of Nursing, Vol. 21, No. 7 (April, 1921), p. 491, excerpt shown below] Also notice that because she was serving after 1920, she received the rank of 2nd Lieutenant.

The WWI VA Index record shown above confirms that she was discharged on April 17, 1922. At that time, her address was Chicago.

One of the methods used to track a person’s life is to search in city directories. The first occurrence of Lois Mills found after 1922 was in 1934, when she was found in Washington DC, employed as a nurse. (The search function is not completely effective and many times an actual manual search must be performed.)

The next record of hers was when she married in 1939, as shown in the marriage certificate at top. Her husband, James A. Herbert, was a clerk for the government in Washington D.C. Further research shows some interesting information. In 1919, he served as clerk for the Graves Registration Service, presumably to track the WWI dead. He was issued passports for Great Britain, Belgium, France, Luxembourg, and Italy and traveled overseas. The photo shown is included with his passport application.
[Source: Ancestry.com. U.S. Passport Applications, 1795-1925 [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2007.]

In 1940, they were living in Washington D.C.  James was continuing his government work.

Her husband James Albert Herbert passed away in May 1969. There are no records of his burial. Perhaps he was buried near his father, who was buried in Mount Olivet Cemetery in Washington D.C.

Lois passed away two years later in Jessup, MD, in July 1971, at age 77. The cause of death is unknown.

Ancestry’s online database lists the date as July 11, 1971[Ancestry.com. U.S., Department of Veterans Affairs BIRLS Death File, 1850-2010 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011]

Like her husband, her final resting place is unknown.

If you would like to help us honor Charlotte Lois Mills Herbert or another Brunswick County WWI veteran, please use the following links:

Click here for the announcement: Announcement: Honor a Brunswick County World War I Veteran
Click here for directions to donate and honor a veteran: How to Honor a Brunswick County World War I Veteran

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Back Porch Rockers to perform on August 15

The next fundraiser to support the Fort Caswell Rifle Range is Oktoberfest in Caswell Beach (October 12, 2019) which includes music by the Back Porch Rockers.

Randy Lewis from Back Porch Rockers asked us to share this invitation which he posted on their Facebook page.

Hey folks, come on out and join us Thursday evening from 6pm – 8pm on August 15th as we perform as part of the Southport Summer Concert Series down at Franklin Square Park. Bring a chair, blanket, something to eat, a beverage and enjoy an evening in one of the most beautiful settings here in Southport. Dance and sing along with The Back Porch Rockers as we perform classic rock favorites by artists such as Eric Clapton, The Eagles, ZZ Top, Tom Petty and many others. It should be a fun-filled evening as the band brings back memories of our younger years.

If you are familiar with our band, you know that we always perform for a cause and this concert is no different. Any and all donations will be used to benefit the “Up Your Arts” program here in the Southport area. Up Your Arts is a non profit organization founded in 2017 to support and enhance the creative and performing arts throughout the greater Southport area.

See their Facebook page for information regarding their future performances.

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WWI Fort Caswell Nurse Profile: Anna Loveland 1871-1964

To view this or another nurse profile at any time, click the “WWI Profile” link beside the nurse’s name on Fort Caswell WWI Nurses, which is also accessible by the blue button on the top right of the webpage.

Source: Ancestry
Polly Anna Loveland
Corry, PA
Army Nurse Corps
2nd Lieutenant

Served:
March 20, 1918 – April 30, 1934
Fort Caswell, US Army Post Hospital:
March 20, 1918 – January 25, 1919

Polly Anna Loveland was born and raised in Pennsylvania. There is a family tree is FamilySearch.

Her WWI PA Service Card shows her place of birth as Columbia, PA, but it seems more likely to be Columbus, as her 1880 Census lists the family residence in Corry, which is very close to Columbus. In addition, most of the family was laid to rest in a cemetery in Columbus. Columbus and Corry are both located in Erie County, PA.

In 1880, her father was working in a tannery. Anna was the youngest, age 10 (should be 7 or 8). There appears to have been eleven children total and one child, a son, born after Anna. According to census records, Anna’s father immigrated to America from England when he was 20, and worked various jobs such as toll collector, farmer, and the tannery as mentioned.

Anna’s mother, Polly Ann Witter Loveland passed away in 1894 and was laid to rest in Columbus, PA. Anna was 23 at the time.

 

“New Trained Nurses.” Buffalo Evening Times, 7 June 1899, p. 7.
Anna graduated in 1899 from School for Trained Nurses at Buffalo General Hospital, as shown in this newspaper clipping. The 1900 Census, when she was 29 years of age, lists her with the other nurses at the hospital.

In 1902, she is listed in the Buffalo City Directory as Night Superintendent at Buffalo General, shown below. [Source: Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA]

In 1906, she is listed as Assistant Superintendent.

A story published in Buffalo Evening Times on January 23, 1907, p. 4 (“Nurses’ Training School Doing a Noble Work”) listed her as one of seven head nurses for the three year training program at Buffalo General Hospital.

By 1910 she had moved to Batavia Hospital. Batavia is about halfway between Buffalo and Rochester, NY.

“New Hospital Superintendent.” The Buffalo Times, 31 July 1918, p. 10.

In July 1918, this story appeared in The Buffalo Times from the town of Batavia. Assistant Superintendent Anna Loveland at Batavia Hospital, and Superintendent Etta E. Robbins resigned to join the war effort. Nurse Loveland was 47 years old. As mentioned earlier, when the war began, only nurses between age 25-35 were accepted.

Details of her US Army service may be found on her WWI PA Service Card, which is shown below and also in table form for easier reading. Her military service is not detailed on the service card after December 1922, but some additional information was found through other records.

03/20/1918 Fort Caswell, NC
01/25/1919 Dembolization Hospital #4
08/14/1919 Hazelhurst Field, NY
04/1922 Fitzsimons General Hospital, Denver, CO
1930 Leiterman General Hospital, San Francisco
04/30/1934 Retirement

The 1930 Census shows she was stationed at Leiterman General Hospital in San Francisco.

The 1939 and subsequent Military Registries (two excerpts shown below), indicate that Anna Loveland retired on April 30, 1934, with the rank of 2nd Lieutenant. Her address at retirement was 6028 Harcourt Ave, Los Angeles. [Source: Ancestry.com. U.S., Select Military Registers, 1862-1985 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA]

In 1940 Anna was living in the same house in Los Angeles with her widowed sister and widowed niece, as well as an unmarried niece.

On April 17, 1964, Anna Loveland passed away at age 93. As her flat marker shows, her military service is displayed. A memorial stone had been placed earlier in the cemetery in Columbus, PA, where her family was laid to rest.

Final Rites Held for Miss Loveland
Funeral services for Miss Anna Loveland, 93, of Saratoga, were held Monday at the West Valley Chapel, Los Gatos.

She died in a Saratoga convalescent hospital.

Before entering the hospital, Miss Loveland had lived for seven years with her niece, Mrs. Louise Morrow, on Williams Ave., Saratoga.

Miss Loveland began a long nursing career after graduating from Buffalo General Hospital, Buffalo, N.Y. She worked in hospitals treating wounded of the Spanish-American War. Later she joined the Army and became a second lieutenant. She got a disability retirement in 1934.

Saratoga survivors are a nephew, Harold Loveland, of La Paloma Ave., and two nieces, Mrs. Louise Morrow and Miss Eunice La Monia, both of Williams Ave.
[Source: https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/29719890]

If you would like to help us honor Polly Anna Loveland or another Brunswick County WWI veteran, please use the following links:

Click here for the announcement: Announcement: Honor a Brunswick County World War I Veteran
Click here for directions to donate and honor a veteran: How to Honor a Brunswick County World War I Veteran

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WWI Fort Caswell Nurse Profile: Bertha Jost 1891-1943

To view this or another nurse profile at any time, click the “WWI Profile” link beside the nurse’s name on Fort Caswell WWI Nurses, which is also accessible by the blue button on the top right of the webpage.

Source: Findagrave
Bertha H. Jost
Perth-Amboy, NJ
Army Nurse Corps
2nd Lieutenant (assumed)

Served:
March 21, 1918 – November 11, 1922
Fort Caswell, US Army Post Hospital:
March 21, 1918 – March 20, 1919

Bertha H. Jost was born in Germany on September 29, 1891, according to her WWI VA Index. (The middle initial was listed on the 1915 NJ Census and 1915 Elizabeth City Directory, excerpt shown below.)

Her mother had three children, Leana (Adelaide), Bernhardt, and Bertha, the youngest. Her mother Katrina (1867-1892) passed away within a year of Bertha’s birth, according to sources, but records were unavailable to confirm.

Her father Gustav married Menne Dettmer [Source of name: Gustav’s death certificate] around 1894 in Germany [Source: 1910 US Census]. Their only child, Margaret/Gretchen, was born the following year, in 1895 [Source: 1905 NJ Census].

The family immigrated to America around 1901. No documents were found to confirm the exact date.

  • The 1905 NJ Census shows the family immigrated together in 1900,
  • the 1910 US Census shows Gustav arrived in 1900 and the family joined him in 1901,
  • and the 1915 NJ Census shows Gustav arrived in 1899 and the family in 1901.

They settled around Perth Amboy, NJ, a small community across the bay from Staten Island. The first occurrence of Gustav Jost, Bertha’s father, was found in the 1903 Perth Amboy City Directory, listing his home as Maurer, NJ. [Source: Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA]

The 1905 NJ Census shows that Gustav was a house carpenter, a trade he pursued throughout his life.

On December 21, 1909, the Perth Amboy evening news published an announcement on page 4 for Adelaide Jost’s marriage to E. [Edward] Krebs of Brooklyn on December 24th.

By 1910, Bernhardt had joined his father as a carpenter, and Bertha had presumably left home to pursue nursing. She was not found in the 1910 US Census.

However, in 1915, she was listed in the 1915 NJ Census as a nurse at Elizabeth General Hospital. The 1915 Elizabeth City Directory also included her, as shown. [Source: Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA]

Her family remained in Perth Amboy, as seen in the 1915 NJ Census.

Nurse Bertha Jost joined the Army Nurse Corps (ANC) in March 1918, serving at Fort Caswell. She remained in the ANC through 1922, although few details are found.

The table below lists her service, based on several records and yet still incomplete.

03/21/1918 Fort Caswell, NC
03/20/1919 Oteen US General Hospital, Asheville, NC
07/1922 Fort Totten, Queens, NYC
11/11/1922 Discharge

 

Nurse Jost, along with Nurses Bell, Dennis, and Trollinger, began serving at Fort Caswell around March 20, 1918.
[Source: The American Journal of Nursing, Vol. 18, No. 6 (May, 1918), pp. 734]

On June 27, 1918, The Wilmington Dispatch marked her arrival at the Wilmington Hotel on page 7.

On January 4, 1919, her brother-in-law Edward Krebs was struck by a trolley car. He died two days later, on January 6, 1919.

Auto Rams Trolley; Man is Killed

Rahway, Jan. 7. – Edward Krebs, of 210 Manor place, Cranford, died about 2:30 o’clock yesterday afternoon in Army General Hospital No. 3, Colonia, from injuries received Saturday afternoon when his automobile ran into a car of the Trenton fast line trolley system of the Public Service Corporation on the St. George avenue grade crossing in Woodbridge.

At the time of the accident Krebs was driving toward Perth Amboy and the trolley was headed toward Elizabeth. It was a two-car train and Krebs’ auto struck the rear car. He was hurled from his seat and his skull was fractured. The injury was in the shape of a cross, each section being about eight inches in length. The auto, a large Studebaker, was demolished.

Mr. Krebs was a contractor, and was 28 years old. He came to Cranford from Chrome some time ago. He was an Elk and a member of the fire department. He is survived by a widow and three sons, Edward, Lester and Rudolph.

A brief obituary and burial notice were also published in the Perth Amboy evening news. Edward Krebs was laid to rest in Rosedale Cemetery. Bertha’s sister Lena/Adelaide would not join him until 1971. She never remarried.

On March 29, 1919, the Oteen weekly newsletter from Asheville, NC, welcomed Nurse Davis and Nurse Jost to their new assignments from Fort Caswell.

On June 30, 1919, the Perth Amboy evening news published an article on page 2 about the local women who served in the Nurse Corps. It included Nurse Jost as one who went overseas, although from records, she spent the war in service at Fort Caswell, followed by Oteen Hospital in Asheville.

On the week of July 12, 1919, the Oteen weekly newsletter listed Nurse Jost as an incoming patient. Oteen began treating nurses several weeks earlier. Nearly 20 nurses were admitted as patients that week.

In 1920, Nurse Jost continued serving in Asheville, NC, at US General Hospital No. 19 (Oteen). There were over 100 nurses listed and about 650 patients.

Around January 7, 1922, Bertha’s stepmother Menne Dettmer Jost passed away. Very brief notices were published in Perth Amboy evening news here and here.

In 1922, Nurse Jost was transferred to Station Hospital, Fort Totten, NY.
[Source: The American Journal of Nursing, Vol. 23, No. 1 (Oct., 1922), pp. 214, (at bottom of the excerpt shown)]

She was discharged from the Army Nurse Corps on November 11, 1922. Nurses had achieved ranks by then, so the assumption is she had earned the rank of 2nd Lieutenant.

The 1925 NYC Census shows her working as a trained nurse in NYC.

Bertha was not located in the 1930 US Census.

In 1940 Bertha was lodging in Manhattan at the Central Club for Nurses, a charter member of the Metropolitan YWCA, located on 132 East 45th St. She reported that she hadn’t worked for 50 weeks and had no income. It’s likely that she was ill at this time, possibly with tuberculosis, given that she served at Oteen Hospital in Asheville, and her obituary indicated that she had a long illness.

Her family, including her father, sister Leana/Adelaide Krebs, brother Bernhardt, and half sister Margaret/Gretchen, continued living in Woodbridge on Rahway Ave, as seen in the 1940 US Census.

Bertha Jost passed away on September 30, 1943. Her obituary is shown below. There are no photos of her gravesite so military honors cannot be confirmed.

World War I Nurse Dies; Rites Tomorrow
Woodbridge – Miss Bertha Jost, who served with the army as a nurse in World War I, died early yesterday in her home, 727 Rahway Avenue, after a long illness.

Funeral services will be held tomorrow afternoon at 2 o’clock from the Greiner Funeral Home, 44 Green Street. Burial will be in the family plot in Alpine Cemetery, Perth Amboy.

Miss Jost is survived by two sisters, Mrs. Lena Krebs and Miss Gretchen Jost and one brother, Bernhardt Jost, all of Woodbridge.
Independent-Leader (Woodbridge, NJ), 1 Oct 1943, p. 1.

On September 30, 1950, her father passed away after three days at the National Elks Home in Bedford, VA. He was laid to rest in the family plot. Bertha’s brother Bernhardt was located there, and it is assumed her stepmother Menne who passed away in 1922 was also laid to rest there. The obituary below contains the last known reference to Bertha’s half sister Gretchen/Margaret.

Gustav Jost
Woodbridge – Funeral services for Gustav Jost, 727 Rahway Avenue, were held Tuesday at the Greiner Funeral Home. Fev. Earl H. Devanny, pastor of the First Presbyterian Church officiated. Burial was in the Alpine Cemetery. Elks services were held Monday night with Exalted Ruler William Holman in charge.

The bearers, all members of the Elks, were: Jeppe Jorgensen, Paul Layden, Daniel Dwyer, Charles Simmen, Stephen Fodor, and Joseph F. Maloney.

Mr. Jost, a retired carpenter and builder died Saturday at the National Elks Home, Bedford, Va. He was 87 years old. Born in Germany, Mr. Jost was a resident of Woodbridge for 25 years. He was a carpenter and builder for 5 years before retiring. He built the Elks clubhouse in Perth Amboy and was a member of Perth Amboy Lodge, BPO Elks.

He is survived by two daughters, Mrs. Leana Krebs and Miss Gretchen Jost; one son Bernhardt, all of Woodbridge. He is also survived by eight grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren.
Raritan Township and Fords Beacon (Fords, NJ), 50 Oct 1950, p. 2.

If you would like to help us honor Bertha Jost or another Brunswick County WWI veteran, please use the following links:

Click here for the announcement: Announcement: Honor a Brunswick County World War I Veteran
Click here for directions to donate and honor a veteran: How to Honor a Brunswick County World War I Veteran

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WWI Fort Caswell Nurse Profile: Elizabeth A. Ford 1883-1954

To view this or another nurse profile at any time, click the “WWI Profile” link beside the nurse’s name on Fort Caswell WWI Nurses, which is also accessible by the blue button on the top right of the webpage.

Source of photo: “Mrs. Elizabeth Shope is Reelected to Office of Historian.” Asheville Citizen-Times (Asheville, NC), 23 June 1943, p. 14.
Annie Elizabeth Ford
Asheville, NC
Army Nurse Corps

Served:
March 21, 1918 – April 22, 1919
Fort Caswell, US Army Post Hospital:
March 21, 1918 – October 8, 1918

Annie Elizabeth Ford was born in Citra, Florida, in 1883. Her family was from Tennessee, living in Florida for only a few years, and most continued to live in Tennessee until their deaths. Her family tree is located in FamilySearch.

By 1900, only the three youngest children were living at home in Montgomery County, TN, which is about 50 miles NNW of Nashville, near the Kentucky border. The census lists that her mother had eight children, five living.

Her mother passed away in 1907. Elizabeth moved to Asheville, NC, in 1909, where she remained the rest of her life [Source: obituary].

The 1910 Census shows her living as a boarder with her widowed sister, Lelia Robinson, both working as trained nurses.

Lelia’s obituary [Asheville Citizen-Times, 18 Oct. 1947; p. 2.] states that she was a graduate of Maryland General Hospital in Baltimore. The 1900 Census lists her as a trained nurse at that hospital.

This clipping from 1915 shows that Elizabeth was a graduate nurse in 1915.

Source: Asheville Citizen-Times, 5 May 1915; p. 9

On March 21, 1918, Elizabeth joined the Army Nurse Corps. The following was published in the Asheville Citizen-Times, 22 March 1918; p. 6.

Miss Elizabeth A. Ford, a well known trained nurse of this city, leaves today for Fort Caswell, where she has enlisted in the government service.

Nurse Elizabeth A. Ford was assigned to the US Army Post Hospital at Fort Caswell, Brunswick County, NC. On October 8, 1918, she was transferred to Camp Jackson, SC, until her discharge on April 22, 1919. Recall from previous posts that the 30th “Old Hickory” Division, returned to Camp Jackson at discharge. Nurse Elizabeth Ford likely processed them then. Her NC WWI Service Card is shown here.

Her sister Leila joined two months later on May 16, 1918, and was sent to the Base Hospital at Camp Gordon, Georgia, until her discharge on December 25, 1918. Her NC WWI Service Card is also shown.

Both Elizabeth and Lelia are listed as NC WWI Nurses on the Appalachian State University NC Nursing History page.

About a week after being discharged from WWI service, on May 1, 1919, Elizabeth married William E. “Jack” Shope of Asheville, a police officer and volunteer fire fighter from Asheville. All later census records show that her sister Lelia continued her nursing duties (in 1920, Nurse Robinson was working at the United States Marine Hospital in Detroit), and from the 1930 census record forward, all three lived together.

An article in the Asheville Citizen-Times of July 6, 1941, announces a meeting called by Elizabeth, serving as chairman of the Red Cross nursing committee. The meeting was to make plans for a refresher course for all Red Cross ex-service and inactive nurses. In 1943, Elizabeth was reelected as the historian for the North Carolina American Legion. The photo of her at the top of the profile was taken from that story. Her obituary, printed below, lists the many years devoted to the veteran community.

Her sister Lelia passed away in 1947. She was laid to rest in the same cemetery as Elizabeth and husband Jack. Neither sister had children.

Annie Elizabeth Ford Shope passed away on June 9, 1954, in Asheville. She was 70 years old. The cause of death was mesenteric thrombosis, a blood clot formed where blood is drained from the small intestine, which caused gangrene of her small intestine.

Mrs. Shope Dies In City

Mrs. W.E. (Jack) Shope of 61 Center Ave., died in an Asheville hospital yesterday following a brief illness.

She was the former Miss Annie Elizabeth Ford, daughter of Jesse Manley and Sarah Anderson Ford.

Funeral services will be conducted at 3 p.m. tomorrow in the chapel of Morris-Lineberry-Black Funeral Home.

The Rev. H.B. Dendy, pastor of the Weaverville Presbyterian Church, will officiate. Burial will be in Lewis Memorial Park.

Mrs. Shope had resided in Asheville since 1909 and served in World War I as an Army nurse.

For seven years, Mrs. Shope was an officer in the North Carolina Department of the American Legion. She served for 10 years as historian of the Kiffin Rockwell (now Rockwell-Ballew) Post of the American Legion.

Mrs. Shope was married in May, 1919, to W.E. Shope.

Surviving are the husband; two brothers, Samuel T. Ford of Nashville, Tenn., and Gilbert T. Ford, of Oneco, Fla.
“Mrs. Shope Dies in City.” Asheville Citizen-Times (Asheville, NC), 10 June 1954, p. 3.

 

She was laid to rest in Lewis Memorial Park in Asheville with her sister Lelia. Her husband Jack was laid to rest there the following year. Elizabeth and her sister Lelia were eligible for a military headstone or flat marker. No application was found. There are no photographs to verify.

If you would like to help us honor Annie Elizabeth Ford Shope or another Brunswick County WWI veteran, please use the following links:

Click here for the announcement: Announcement: Honor a Brunswick County World War I Veteran
Click here for directions to donate and honor a veteran: How to Honor a Brunswick County World War I Veteran

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