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Pictorial Feature:
NURSES, HOSTESSES, & JR'S.
Nurses
The onset of the Great Depression brought forth a new emphasis on economy trains directed at family travel. On August 21, 1935, the Union Pacific Railroad introduced Registered Nurse-Stewardesses to their passenger trains, the first women to become part of an operating train crew. Many other railroads soon followed suit. The universal qualifications for all nurse candidates were that they possess intelligence, tact, candid friendliness, and initiative.
The nurse's primary duties were to assist women with children and to attend to the needs of the elderly on long cross-country journeys.

Southern and Eastern railroads used hostesses on their trains but they did not require Registered Nursing degrees. Their emphasis was old-fashioned "Southern hospitality." Train travel became more enjoyable with these young women on-board, but with the outbreak of WW II; most railroads released the nurses to help in military hospitals.

Answers to questions on Home Page
1. 1935
2. Union Pacific, Florette C. Welp-first hired
3. Airline Stewards first, then stewardesses
4. 1942 Released for War duty
"JUNIOR" STEWARDESS-NURSE
In the late 1930's, Southern Pacific Railroad came up with a unique promotional idea--- a Junior Stewardess -Nurse Club for little girls.
Their ads said, "All girls like trains. All girls like to play nurse. Naturally, most girls want to be a stewardess-nurse on a Southern Pacific train someday."

Club applicants were given a train primer to study, emphasizing safety, general railroad
knowledge and travel. After "successfully passing" a Question and Answer Test, the child
was issued her own Junior Stewardess-Nurse Manual, pin and a letter of congratulations.
It was a well-crafted advertising piece, suggesting that children encourage adults to travel
by train, "Because it was the best and safest way to travel."

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