Red Cross
. I. Facts about the ARC
-. Purpose of the ARC
-. ARC Structure
-. Activities of the ARC
* Military and Naval Welfare Service
(ARC Clubmobile Special)
* Domestic Services
* Volunteer Special Services
Purpose of the American Red Cross
Picture Source: ARC poster by Jes Schlaikjer, 1944 .
The duties of the American Red Cross during World War II were to furnish volunteer aid to the sick and wounded of the armed forces, to carry out the purposes of the Treaty of Geneva, to act in matters of voluntary relief and to serve, in accord with military and naval authorities, as a medium of communication between the people of the United States and their Army and Navy.

It was further charged with providing a system of national and international relief to lessen the suffering caused by famine, fire, flood, and other calamities, and to devise measures for their prevention.

In keeping with its policy, the Red Cross also extended its help to various civilian groups who are exposed to the hazards and dislocations of war. These groups included members of the United States Merchant Marine when under contract for a specified cruise or trip or on authorized shore leave, civilian pilots of the Army Air Transport, and members of the Army Water Division when they were merchant seamen or shore-based personnel stationed outside the United States. 

American Red Cross Structure
The National Office
During WWII, the ARC National Office was headed by the President of the United States and the following officers elected by the Central Commitee: 
- three vice presidents
- a counselor
- a secretary 
- a treasurer.
.v Picture Source: Who is Who in Uniform, ca.1943
President Franklin D. Roosevelt

The Central Commitee

Picture Source: American Red Cross postcard
American Red Cross National Headquarters,
Washington, DC
.v The Central Committee consisted of 18 members, 6 appointed by the President of the United States (among them the chairman of the Central Committee), 6 elected by the incorporators, and 6 elected by the delegates of the chapters.

Elected members served for 3 years. The Central Committee had entire control, management, and administration of all aspects of the American Red Cross. 

The Executive Commitee

The nine members of the executive commitee were appointed by the Central Commitee. The Executive Committee could exercise all powers of the Central Committee when that body was not in session. One chairman served both committees and, under the advice and direction of the Central Committee, was executive head of the corporation. Under the chairman were a vice chairman at large and 6 vice chairmen in charge of finance, the American Junior Red Cross and personnel relations, insular and foreign operations, public relations, domestic service, and area offices and chapter service. 
Pitcure Source: American Red Cross
Red Cross Chairmen Norman H. Davis in a conference about a further expansion of the Army and Navy Nurse Corps.
From left to right: Rear Admiral McIntyre (Surgeon General of the Navy), Miss Beard (Director of the Red Cross Nursing Service), Lt. Commander Dauser (Director of the Navy Nurse Corps), Chairman Dauser, Col. Flikke (Head of the Army Nurse Corps) and Major General Magee (Surgeon General of the Army)
Local Red Cross Chapters
The chapter, usually covering a single county, was the local unit of the American Red Cross and responsible for all Red Cross activities and services within its territory, subject to the policies and regulations of the national headquarters.

There were 3,757 chapters throughout the United States and its possessions during World War II. 

.vv Picture Source: ARC postcard

The following list gives an overview about the serveral Red Cross offices and the services which they supervised. The list shows what a tremendous task the Red Cross fulfilled.

Finance Office
- Accounting Service
Office of Insular and Foreign Operations
- Relief Service to Prisoners of War
- Civilian Relief Service
Office of American Junior Red Cross and of Personnel Relations
- American Junior Red Cross
- College Units
- the Personnel Service
Office of Public Relations
- Publicity
- Fund Raising
Office of Domestic Service 
- Disaster Relief and Civilian War Aid
- First Aid, Water Safety, and Accident Prevention
- Nursing Service
- Medical Office
- Blood Donor Service
- Nutrition Service
- Volunteer Special Services
- Services to the Armed Forces
- Supply Office 
- Home Service
- Services to Veterans
- Camp and Hospital Council Service
Area Offices and Chapter Services
- the North Atlantic Area
- the Eastern Area
- the Southeastern Area
- the Midwestern Area
- the Pacific Area
continue to:
Purpose of the ARC
ARC Structure
Military and Naval Welfare Service
Domestic Services
Volunteer Special Services
[ I. Development ]..[ II. Facts about the ARC ]..[ III. Uniforms ]..[ IV. Sources ]