Before attending the FREE Ice Cream Social in Standish Park, meet the “Cyclone in Calico” at the Library. Pam Johnson will be reprising her role as Mary “Mother” Bickerdyke. Learn about this amazing woman that cut through military red-tape to set up clean and efficient field hospitals during the Civil War. She established 300 field hospitals and worked on 19 battlefields. She accompanied General Sherman on his march to the sea. He once said “she outranks me!” After the war, Mary worked tirelessly to help civil war veterans receive pensions.
It all started in at old Central Church in Galesburg, Illinois. In 1861, Mary took $500 worth of supplies to the military outpost at Cairo, Illinois. Once there, Mary saw the deplorable conditions. Soldiers were dying from dysentery. She began her work cleaning up the Cairo hospital and she didn’t stop until 1865.