Autobiography, speeches, poetry, and other writings

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Barton’s career as a humanitarian and relief organizer is documented in her Speeches and Writings File, which contains lecture notes, drafts, and proofs of her own lectures and writings, as well as those of fellow suffragists and humanitarians. After the Civil War, Barton and Dorence Atwater, a former prisoner at Andersonville, embarked on a speaking tour to appeal for information to locate and identify Union soldiers whose fate or whereabouts was unknown and to defray the expenses of the Office of Correspondence with Friends of the Missing Men of the U.S. Army. Although Barton disliked public speaking, she engaged in lecture tours to publicize and gain support for her relief work. While changing trains during a lecture tour in 1867, Barton first met Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony, who were also on the lecture circuit. Barton spoke to women’s groups, veterans’ associations, and others about her experiences in the Civil War, and Anthony published notices of Barton’s lectures in the women’s suffrage newspaper, The Revolution. While Barton contributed articles to many feminist publications, including Lucy Stone’s newspaper, The Woman’s Journal, her primary cause remained her relief work, particularly founding and organizing the American Red Cross. Three of her book-length works are available for transcription, including: The Red Cross in Peace and War (1899), A Story of the Red Cross (1904), and The Story of My Childhood (1907).

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