Clara Barton Letter

The Case:

Tucked into the pages of an antique book, our contributor from Osceola, Indiana found what he thinks may be a letter written by Clara Barton, founder of the American Red Cross.

Dated July 1866, the letter reports the death of a man named Israel Brown. Along with the letter, our contributor found an envelope addressed to J. Blair Welch, Burnt Cabins, Pennsylvania.

Did Clara Barton actually write this letter? If so, why was she writing about these men?

History Detectives consults a Clara Barton biographer, a civil war prison historian, and a Pennsylvania genealogist.

Document: Missing Men
View one of Clara Barton's Missing Men Roll Call fromThe Daily Evening Bulletin, Pennsylvania, June 1866

Note: In the Clara Barton Letter story that was broadcast we mistakenly showed a map of Osceola, Illinios instead of Osceola, Indiana. We are working to correct the error in later airings. 

Discuss this story

Season 8, Episode 4
Season 9, Episode 5

Eduardo Pagán Location:
Washington D.C., Pennsylvania and South Carolina

Related Content

Related Links


This is a place for opinions, comments, questions and discussion; a place where viewers of History Detectives can express their points of view and connect with others who value history. We ask that posters be polite and respectful of all opinions. History Detectives reserves the right to delete comments that don’t conform to this conduct. We will not respond to every post, but will do our best to answer specific questions, or address an error.


blog comments powered by Disqus