To Clara Barton (click on song title to hear MP3 music clip)
© Jennie Avila
click on image to see full size
Copies of original letters that list donations for Clara Barton, written to Gardiner Tufts of the Soldiers Relief Commission, Worcester, MA
Courtesy Doug Bast, Boonsborough Museum of History Boonsborough, MD
Foraging in the archives of the Boonsborough Museum of History, I came across the above letters. I was struck by the contrast between the humble items donated to Clara Barton, and the enormity of the task to which they were directed. Further reading in books and newspapers enhanced my admiration for the young woman who found her way to the front lines of many battles and provided help with whatever supplies were available. She earned the title, "Angel of the Battlefield".
An article titled, "Clara Barton Brought Kindness to the Battlefield", found in The Washington Star, April 20, 1952, inspired the first lines of my song. "She told it in her own words: Five days and nights with three hours sleep - a narrow escape from capture - and some days of getting the wounded into hospitals... "