Hours: Thursday, Friday and Saturday
12:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Tours begin on the half hour
Last Admission One Hour Before Closing
Phone: (202) 824-0613
Location: 437 7th Street NW
Washington, DC 20004

Today, my husband and I were fortunate enough to be able to take a walking tour of the Clara Barton Missing Soldier's Museum. We explore, with a walking group from the Cosmos Club, sights around the District of Columbia and environs to learn about historical sights. Our guide was the architect who had a great deal to do with the historical reconstruction that has taken place in the Clara Barton Missing Soldier's Museum. Her dedication to this endeavor has made this treasure possible. Thank you, Andrea.

Image: GSA Permission to Use Image: Public Domain/Clara Barton photographed by James E. Purdy Don't be confused when you hear Clara Barton's House and Clara Barton Missing Soldier's Museum. These are two distinct places to visit while touring Washington, DC. This article addresses the Clara Barton Missing Soldier's Museum. The GSA and The National Museum of Civil War Medicine worked together to open this public museum to shed light on the dedicated work of Clara Barton. Clara Barton, born Clarissa Harlowe Barton, December 25, 1821, died April 12, 1912--was a nurse, humanitarian, founder and first president of the American Red Cross. After the Civil War she lived on the 3rd floor of this building. At the Clara Barton Missing Soldier's Museum you will learn about Clara Barton's work and how she provided information to the families of missing soldiers after massive records were missing in the military records system after the Civil War. Whether prisoners were killed in action, wounded, not recorded as missing or being admitted to a hospital, Clara Barton received more than 63,000 letters to try to find out information about the fate of these soldiers between the years l865 and l868. By then she had determined the fate of more than 22,000 individuals in question and had answered more than 40,000 letters. Among Clara Barton's many talents she was also an active voice lobbying politicians and the army to improve the day-to-day life conditions of soldiers. To this day her legacy of finding soldiers missing in action lives on. Beyond this Ms. Barton also expanded the efforts of the Red Cross to include disasters not having to do with war. Clara Barton Missing Soldier's Museum

"In 1869, Clara Barton closed the Missing Soldiers Office and headed to Europe. The third floor of her old boardinghouse was boarded up in 1913, and the site forgotten. The site was 'lost' in part because the city realigned its addressing system in the 1870s. The boardinghouse became 437 ½ Seventh Street Northwest (formerly 488-½ Seventh Street West).

In 1997, General Services Administration carpenter Richard Lyons was hired to clear out the building for its demolition. He found a treasure trove of Clara Barton items in the attic, including signs, clothing, Civil War soldier's socks, an army tent, Civil War-era newspapers, and many documents relating to the Office of Missing Soldiers. This discovery led to the National Park Service saving the building from demolition. It took years, however, for the site to be restored. The Clara Barton's Missing Soldier's Office Museum, run by the National Museum of Civil War Medicine, opened in 2015." Clara Barton

For More Information:

Clara Barton's office to become a museum in the fall
National Museum of Civil War Medicine
Clara Barton Missing Soldier's Museum
Clara Barton
Clara Barton: American Red Cross
Clara Barton
First posted: Apr 23, 2016
Last update: Sep 11, 2018