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Excerpt from the introductory "Why Does the American Red Cross Give Relief Aid?":
Under the terms of the charter given it by Congress in 1905, the American Red Cross undertook to help the people of other lands in peacetime calamities. Through the aid which has been carried on under its banner since then to all parts of the world, compassion for suffering and a desire to help have come to be regarded as outstanding national characteristics of the American people.
That spirit of helpfulness is not limited to times of peace. When the second world war flamed from country to country, a great wave of sympathy for the innocent and helpless victims swept the United States. From coast to coast, the American people wanted to send aid to the women, children, and old people torn from their comfortable homes and deprived of the necessities of life, and to the fighting men made prisoners of war.
The American Red Cross expanded its activities to include relief and service to those suffering from this world-wide conflict. It was possible for the organization to act promptly and effectively because of its more than 6o years of service to suffering humanity, regardless of race, color, or creed, and its extensive experience in giving relief in national and international disasters.
American National Red Cross
World War 1939-1945, American Red Cross
Military History | Social History
American National Red Cross, "Foreign war relief: September 1, 1939-December 31, 1942" (1943). World War Regimental Histories. 170.
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