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Dexheimer, Florence Chambers, 1866-1925 / Sketches of Wisconsin pioneer women
([1924?] )

Jennings, Nettie
Jane Jennings,   pp. 18-21 PDF (827.3 KB)


Page 19


her trip was in a day coach and she was two days and
two nights on the train. She landed safely (she always
did) and after finding a room to deposit her valise, she
started for the hospital, she found it, presented herself to
Miss Dorothy Dix, who was head nurse. Miss Dix
heard her story, then asked her how old she was, Jane
told her. Miss Dix shook her head and said "We do not
take any one under thirty years of age." Jane was dis-
appointed but not discouraged. Miss Dix asked her if
her mother approved of her coming. Jane told her she
did, her mother prepared her lunch.
    Jane's splendid courage never deserted her, she
sought her brother and talked it over. He told her Dr.
Bliss was in charge of all the army hospitals in Wash-
ington.
    Jane found Dr. Bliss, she told him her story. He
was greatly impressed with this serious and determined
young woman, who was tall and so slender she almost
looked frail. Dr. Bliss told her he would give her a
chance to nurse the soldiers in tents; there were many
of them from the over-crowded hospitals. She began as
an assistant nurse; in two weeks she was placed in charge
of a number of tents directing others. For over a year
she gave her entire time to the soldiers (without compen-
sation) until all tents were vacated by soldiers going
home and being removed to main building. Dr. and
Mrs. Bliss became her life-long friends.
    She was given a position in the United States
Treasury; she did not remain here long on account of
her health, which had been over-taxed by her constant
nursing. She took up journalism; her first letters were
published in the Janesville (Wis.) Gazette, then the
Milwaukee Sentinel, Chicago Tribune, Inter-Ocean,
Springfield, (Mass.) Republican, Boston Transcript, New
York Times, New York Tribune and New York Inde-
pendent. The latter two papers she wrote for for many
years, the Independent until a few weeks before her last
illness.
    In 1872 she bought a home in the town of Monroe
and moved the family into it. This was a very comfort-
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