Soldiers' Aid Society
During the American Civil War, the Soldiers' Aid Society was a private organization providing Northern soldiers with the supplies they needed to carry on the war. Many large communities had a Soldiers' Aid Society. Women in Cleveland, Ohio, established the first such organization in the nation on April 20, 1861. The Cleveland organization was known as the "Soldiers' Aid Society of Northern Ohio." Rebecca Elliott Cromwell Rouse served as the group's first president. The organization provided the thousands of men who enlisted in the Union Army from northern Ohio with blankets and clothing. Other Soldiers' Aid Societies quickly formed in Cincinnati and Columbus as well as in smaller communities across the state. Women founded the Cleveland chapter, while men established the Columbus and Cincinnati groups. Women played a major role in these two other cities as well. Some of these organizations existed for the entire duration of the war. Other societies, including the one in Cleveland, became part of the United States Sanitary Commission.
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- McPherson, James M. Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1988.
- Roseboom, Eugene H. The Civil War Era: 1850-1873. Columbus: Ohio State Archaeological and Historical Society, 1944.