Rebecca Usher of Hollis was invited to be a nurse at the U.S. General Hospital in Chester, Pennsylvania, a position she accepted in 1862. She worked with other Maine women, including Ruth Mayhew and Louise Titcomb. She continued working at various military hospitals in Washington, Annapolis, and Virginia until the war's end. The diary entries span from January 10, 1865 through January 1, 1872.
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