Clara Barton, a 60-year-old teacher, founded the American Red Cross in Washington D.C. on May 21, 1881. After the Civil War, Clara Barton took a trip to Europe where she learned about the global Red Cross network. Barton’s devotion to humanitarian service left her and a close-knit group of associates to institute the American Red Cross.
During her 23 years as the head of the American Red Cross, Clara Barton oversaw aid to the United States military during the Spanish-American War, the inclusion of relief work during times of peace, and the first disaster relief efforts.
Today, the American Red Cross provides education, emergency services, and disaster relief to those in need, and is one of the top contributing humanitarian organizations in the country.