War Relief Efforts of Kitty Herrick

Carolyn “Kitty” Herrick, wife of the U.S. Ambassador to France, quickly immersed herself in war relief work. In August 1914, she considered joining other American women volunteers serving as nurses at the front lines, such as Isadora Duncan. Her husband, however, urged her to reconsider. Instead, Kitty remained in Paris and played several important roles in medical aid and war relief efforts. She was instrumental in planning the American Ambulance Hospital in Paris, alongside the wives of Herman Harjes and George Carroll.

Minutes from the first American Women’s Committee meeting, called by Carolyn Herrick on August 6, 1914. View the full document.
Archives of the American Hospital in Paris

Kitty also helped raise funds for the newly-established American Relief Clearing House, liaising with her friend Madame Jusserand, wife of French Ambassador to the United States Jean-Jules Jusserand, who directed relief work for France in the United States from the French Embassy in Washington, D.C.

Her strenuous duties and war relief activities took a toll on Kitty’s health, and she fell ill for a time that fall before returning to work. Parisians called her “The American Angel” for her efforts.

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