The Popcorn Stand: Happy birthday to the American Red Cross

Today marks the 135 year anniversary the American Red Cross has supported troops and provided relief in times of disaster, both national and abroad.

On this day in 1881, Clara Barton, dubbed “The Angel of the Battlefield” for her humanitarian work in the Civil War, established the first American Red Cross chapter in Washington, D.C.

Barton gave her blessing to H.A. Lemmon in 1898 to start the Silver State’s first chapter in Carson City. Nevada’s early Red Cross efforts centred on first aid and water safety as well as support of troops in World War I.

Today the Red Cross supports those affected by disaster such as earthquakes and floods and military personnel and their families, and conducts blood collections and health education events.

It also makes special effort to collect blood for those battling cancer. Thousands of cancer patients — from those who lose blood in surgery to those who need to boost their blood count to make it through treatment — rely on lifesaving blood donations every day.

But giving blood is just one way to support cancer patients; Carson City’s largest annual fundraiser for cancer research is happening today in Mills Park. Stop by Relay for Life from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. to celebrate cancer survivors and caregivers. There will be food, raffles, bounce houses, games, entertainment, and, most importantly, plenty of love and support from the residents who make Carson City the greatest place to call home.

Congratulations, American Red Cross, on 135 years of service. Here’s to 135 more.

The Popcorn Stand is written Tuesday through Saturday by the editorial staff of the Nevada Appeal. It tackles topics of a different nature or topics that make us go “hmm.” We welcome your thoughts and suggestions at


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