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The Red Cross:Some Facts Concerning Clara Barton’s Work
(Page 1 of 8)
By Walter P. Phillips
Bridgeport, Conn.

Clara Barton organized the American Red Cross in 1881 with a few followers, members and supporters.  By 1903, the American National Red Cross had local auxiliaries from New York to California.  Thousands were involved.  The national headquarters was located in Clara Barton’s Glen Echo home and staffed by unpaid volunteers and no national administrative budget.  The growing organization needed a centralized administrative restructuring that Barton recognized, yet had not yet done.  The lack of a centralized administration surfaced as a problem during the Spanish-American War in 1898.  Barton was in Cuba for close to a year doing war relief work.  A growing faction of Red Cross auxiliary members, mostly from the New York auxiliaries drifted into their own organizational structure. Mabel Boardman emerged as Barton opposition.  This power struggle and the attacks on Clara Barton as the organization’s President continued to grow over the years and led to her resignation in 1904.

Walter P. Phillips had known Clara Barton since 1878. He had served as a secretary to the organization for over 20 years.  He is listed in this document as the Chairman of the Executive Committee.  Phillips was an ardent Barton supporter and wrote this document in her defense against attacks by Boardman supporters.  Also see CLBA 4539, The Red Cross March, a recording he dedicated to Clara Barton. 
Paper. W15.5, L 22 L cm

Clara Barton National Historic Site, CLBA 4497