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Isabelle Martin’s War Service

Letter to Mrs Martin

The World War I service of American College of Surgeons founder Franklin Martin, MD, FACS, is fairly well known. Less well known, however, is the service of his wife Mrs. Isabelle Hollister Martin during the same time period. Dr. Martin distinguished himself as Chairman of the General Medical Board of U.S. President Woodrow Wilson’s Council of National Defense and the Medical Section of the Advisory Commission.

Isabelle Martin was invited by Samuel Gompers, Chairman of the Commission’s Committee on Labor, to participate in that Committee’s Subcommittee on Women in Industry. News clippings from the Martin Memoirs notebooks, from the same period in 1917, show Isabelle with Colonel T.H. Goodwin, member of the British war mission to the United States. Goodwin was considered a war hero in Britain, and was on a mission to inspect officers at the Reserve Officers’ Training Camp at Fort Sheridan, just north of Chicago.

Martin & Goodwin

For more information about Mrs. Isabelle Hollister Martin, and the Martins’ services during World War I, see Franklin Martin’s autobiography, The Joy of Living, and the Franklin H. and Isabelle H. Martin Papers in the ACS Archives.

ACS Archives Highlights is a series showcasing the vibrant history of the American College of Surgeons, its members, and the history of surgery. For further information on our featured highlights, search the Archives Catalog or contact the ACS Archivist.