Clarissa "Clara" Harlowe Barton (December 25, 1821 – April 12, 1912) was a nurse who founded the American Red Cross. She was a field nurse in the American Civil War, a teacher, and patent clerk.
She worked for several years as a teacher, even starting her own school in Bordentown, New Jersey in 1853. In 1854 she moved south to Washington, D.C. From 1854 to 1857 she was employed as a clerk (the first woman to work there)in the Patent Office until her anti-slavery opinions made her too controversial.
She joined up with the Union Army and would organize able bodied men to take food and supplies to help care for other soldiers and Confederate prisoners. When supplies where low she would solicit help by messengers and newspaper ads.
She tended to wounded overseas as well during the Franco-Prussian War and out of the first Geneva Conventions the International Red Cross was born. She began using the Red Cross to help when natural disasters occurred such as the Johnstown Floods and forest fires that would devastate farms and homes. At the age of 76 she traveled to Cuba during the Spanish-American war to tend to the wounded.
A month before he was murdered President Lincoln appointed her as General Correspondent for the Friends of Paroled Prisoners, meaning she would find missing soldiers information and pass it on to their families. By the time she died, she and her team had uncovered the information and matched it to the families of over 22,000 soldiers and others lost during the war. She was proposed to three times in her life and never married. Read more about her work here: http://www.historynet.com/clara-barton
**My mother who was a nurse named my sister Clara and she is now a pharmacist, med-student and intern on a synthetic blood project