Capital Campaign Launched for Establishing Clara Barton Memorial Park


A plan to honor Clara Barton, who broke an important barrier at the Battle of Antietam to become the first Civil War nurse to be allowed on a battlefield during the battle, and founder and president of the American Red Cross, is moving along by way of The Clara Barton Memorial Committee.

In preparation for fundraising, the Clara Barton Memorial Fund is now established with the Community Foundation of Washington County MD, Inc.  This effort will facilitate donations, to help build a larger-than-life bronze sculpture of Barton caring for a fallen soldier.

The Committee, chaired by Al Martin, is working with internationally renowned Washington County sculptor, Toby Mendez whose work includes the Thurgood Marshall Memorial located in front of the State House in Annapolis, the six Major League Baseball Hall of Fame Baltimore Orioles at Camden Yards, The United States Navy Memorial in Washington DC, and the Thomas Kennedy Memorial in Hagerstown. An enthusiastic supporter of the vision of the Clara Barton Memorial, Mendez has graciously offered as a gesture of his commitment, an in-kind donation to lower the overall cost of the intended bronze memorial.

Significant funds must be raised to make this memorial a reality. The City of Hagerstown, in working with the Committee, plans the sculpture’s location to be on Hagerstown’s Cultural Trail at 319 Summit Avenue. Additionally, Senator Elizabeth Dole has accepted the Clara Barton Memorial Committee’s invitation to serve as Honorary Chair.

Executive Director Eric Anderson of the local Red Cross stated, “Clara Barton’s preparation at the Battle of Antietam in September 1862, her timely delivery of much needed bandages and medical supplies, and the care she provided to the wounded there, all laid the groundwork for her eventual role in the creation of the American Red Cross. While she founded the Red Cross nearly two decades later and in a different place, the seeds of launching a humanitarian organization of our size and impact were sown right here in Washington County and have helped save thousands of lives in the years since.”  At Antietam, Clara Barton earned the nickname “Angel of the Battlefield.”

In 2017, the Western Maryland Chapter of the American Red Cross celebrated its centennial and discussions were had about creating a meaningful memorial to Clara Barton here in Hagerstown. Clara Barton’s philosophy of immediate response and medical care is something that everyone in the community can relate to.

Donations to the Clara Barton Memorial Fund can be made by clicking “DONATE NOW” at the top of our homepage. Checks may also be made out to “Community Foundation of Washington County” with “Clara Barton Memorial Fund” written in the memo space and mailed to – Community Foundation of Washington County, 37 S. Potomac St., Hagerstown, MD 21740.