Foggy Bottom in Washington, District of Columbia — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
The American Red Cross - Harvard Field Hospital Unit
(September 1939 - July 1942)
This plaque acknowledges the public spirit of Harvard University and the dedication of the staff of the American Red Cross - Harvard Field Hospital Unit, who provided and staffed a pre-fabricated hospital sent to Salisbury, England, in the summer of 1941 to deal with the potential outbreak of communicable diseases.
In particular, homage is paid to the following - ‘Reported missing and presumed lost’ on the voyage to Britain:
Ruth Breckenridge - Housemother
Nancie M. Pett, R.N.
Phyllis L. Evans, R.N.
Maxine Loomis, R.N.
Dorothea L. Koehn, R.N.
Dorothy C. Morse, R.N.
In July 1942 the hospital was transferred to the United States Army. Following the war, the facility reverted to the British Ministry of Health and was the site of the Common Cold Research Unit. It finally closed in 1990.
Erected by American Red Cross.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Charity & Public Work • Science & Medicine • War, World II • Women. A significant historical month for this entry is July 1942.
Location. 38° Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 2025 E Street Northwest, Washington DC 20006, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. In Memory (a few steps from this marker); Jane Delano (within shouting distance of this marker); The American Red Cross (within shouting distance of this marker); National Headquarters, American Red Cross (within shouting distance of this marker); Constitution Hall (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); NSDAR Founders Memorial (about 400 feet away); Memorial Continental Hall (about 400 feet away); Gen. John A. Rawlins Memorial (about 500 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Foggy Bottom.
Regarding The American Red Cross - Harvard Field Hospital Unit. Four of the Red Cross nurses went missing and probably died after their ship, the M/S Vigrid, was torpedoed by a German U-boat on June 24, 1941. The four nurses were: Nancy Margaret Pott (shown as 'Pett' on the marker), Dorothea Louise Koehn, Phyllis Lou Evans and Dorothy Catherine Morse. Housemother Breckenridge and Nurse Loomis were killed when their ship, the S.S. Maasdam, was attacked on June 27, 1941. These nurses were the first U.S. uniformed female losses in World War II.
Also see . . .
1. The M/S Vigrid, torpedoed on June 24, 1941 by Nazi U-boat. (Submitted on November 1, 2019, by J. Makali Bruton of Querétaro, Mexico.)
2. The S.S. Maasdam. (Submitted on November 1, 2019, by J. Makali Bruton of Querétaro, Mexico.)
1. Search for information on Dorothy C. Morse
I've been searching for years about my aunt, Dorothy C. Morse, R.N, lost at sea in 1941. This is the first time I've found any data, so I'd like to thank you for posting it. There is a portrait of her in Boston somewhere, so my mom told me before she passed, but I've never found it. It was hung I believe in the old Boston Floating Hospital, but I've researched endlessly at all hospital archives and the Boston Public Library and come up with nothing. Can you help?
Editor's Note: Thank you for your note. We regret we can't offer more information, but perhaps a visitor to this site may be able to assist.
— Submitted June 2, 2010, by Margaret Cahill of Reading, Massachusetts.
2. Nurse lost at sea 1941
The recent book, The Great Secret, by Jennet Conant, describes the sinking of two ships in a convoy carrying the staff of the Harvard Field Hospital in 1941, with loss of 6 nurses. See page 61 of the book.
— Submitted August 31, 2021, by Edward Tabor of Bethesda, Maryland.
Credits. This page was last revised on March 20, 2022. It was originally submitted on January 3, 2009, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. This page has been viewed 1,678 times since then and 107 times this year. Photos: 1. submitted on January 3, 2009, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. 2. submitted on November 1, 2019, by Craig Baker of Sylmar, California. • Kevin W. was the editor who published this page.